A HOODED thug threatened to shoot shop workers during a robbery.
John Cammock told the two women he had a gun as he demanded cash at Booze Busters, in Peterlee.
His accomplice Michael Birch later revealed Cammock had been holding a piece of brick beneath his jacket as the pair held up the York Road store on February 4.
Durham Crown Court heard Cammock demanded the women put money in a bag as he made repeated threats he would fire. One of the women shut herself in the stockroom and phoned police.
The men grabbed lager and police found them drinking on the street. Cammock was arrested, but Birch ran off.
Cammock, 24, denied the robbery when questioned, but Sunderland-born Birch, 25, handed himself in a week later. Both were given three year jail terms after admitting robbery.
Stuart Graham, for Cammock, said he suffered from depression and started taking drugs at 14 as he struggled to deal with tragic circumstances.
Jane Waugh, for Birch, of Tees Close, Peterlee, said the robbery had been Cammock’s idea and said police only knew the full account of what they had done because he handed himself in.
Cammock was also sentenced to a further three months after admitting the cultivation of cannabis, as police found 17 cannabis plants in his home in Malvern Close, Peterlee.