Scunthorpe postmaster welcomes 'indefinite' jail term for shop robber Eithan Teanby
A POSTMASTER has welcomed the sentence handed down to a father-of-three jailed indefinitely after robbing a post office.
Peter Smith was on duty with another member of staff, Sue Smith, when the Post Office on East Common Lane in Scunthorpe was robbed by Eithan Teanby on May 21.
Teanby attacked Mr Smith, slashed his wife Hilarie Smith – who came in from a back room – across the forehead with a knife, and threatened to kill staff in the terrifying incident.
Teanby, who had failed to return to prison after a weekend of leave, fled and headed to Nottingham, where he later committed another robbery and an attempted robbery. He has now been given an indefinite jail sentence at Nottingham Crown Court and must serve a minimum seven years.
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Speaking after the sentence, Mr Smith said he was pleased with the verdict.
"I am glad the eyes of the law trust us and what the law says goes," he said.
All three of the Smiths have been handed £500 each from public funds for what Judge Michael Stokes QC described as their "courage" and "valour". Teanby admitted two robberies, one attempted robbery and two charges of possessing a knife.
The court was told that on the day of the robbery in Scunthorpe, Teanby loitered around outside the Post Office, said prosecutor Jon Fountain.
He said: "Teanby said he wanted to use the photocopier.
"Sue Smith had to unlock a security door to allow him to do this. He pushed her back behind the counter and the door closed and automatically locked behind him."
Mr Fountain said Teanby clawed at Mr Smith, pushing him back into Sue Smith.
She tumbled to the floor and suffered bruising, a bumped head and a detached retina.
The court heard Teanby struck Mr Smith to the head and right hand with a knife.
Teanby shouted he wanted money and would kill staff if they did not turn off the alarm.
Mr Fountain said: "Hilarie Smith came in and he slashed her across her forehead with a knife and punched Mr Smith to his left eye.
"There was cash on the floor and blood splattering."
Teanby escaped with £2,560 and left behind his fingerprints and his jacket.
After the robbery, Teanby changed his clothes, took taxis and went on to commit the offences in Nottingham.
He was arrested there after a police officer recognised him.
Matthew Lowe, in mitigation, said the offences committed were "appalling crimes" against vulnerable people.
Judge Stokes said: "You were out of control. Mr Smith, Mrs Smith and Sue Smith behaved with rare courage."