Cumbria Crack

Teen tells jury he had “nothing to do” with Penrith knifepoint robbery

The ATM at Barclays Bank in Penrith at which the woman was robbed

A YOUNG man has told a jury he played no part in the knifepoint robbery of a woman at a cashpoint – nor any plot to hatch the crime.

Paul Stuchfield, 19, is one of two teenagers on trial at Carlisle Crown Court. Both Stuchfield and a 14-year-old boy deny one charge. This alleges conspiracy to rob, on January 16 this year.

Jurors have heard how a 16-year-old boy has admitted robbing a woman at knifepoint as she tried to withdraw money from an ATM outside Barclays Bank in Penrith town centre in early evening darkness on that date. That woman suffered a number of puncture wounds to her lower body during the incident.

It is alleged Stuchfield and the 14-year-old were both involved in a conversation inside a town McDonald’s less than two hours beforehand. A teenage girl has told jurors she heard Stuchfield say he and others “were going to cover their faces and rob a woman with a knife, and then stamp the knife on the grass so the fingerprints would go away”.

But giving evidence in court today (MON), Stuchfield, of Kirkoswald, near Penrith, dismissed her account. He said he was present in the restaurant but insisted he was not involved in any such conversation, which he claimed “never happened”. “It didn’t take place at all,” Stuchfield told the jury. He added: “I had nothing to do with this robbery.”

The trial continues.