Jail for robbers who threatened baby with knife
A gang who held a knife to a baby’s throat as they demanded the code to a safe during a home rush robbery are now behind bars after armed police intercepted two members in their getaway car on the M40.
Cousins Joshua Juggan and Malik Ragnatt were among four men that stormed a house in the Stoke area of Coventry on the morning of 18 June last year. They tied two women to chairs while the pair – alongside Daniel McKain (29) and 24-year-old Gregory Crockett – searched the house. And when they discovered a safe inside a kitchen cupboard one of the group held a craft knife to a 10-month-old baby.
The men ripped the safe from the wall before 24-year-old Juggan, from Alvey Street in Southwark, drove them to a field off a motorway slip-road where they prized open the safe with a crowbar and divided the cash.
Juggan and 21-year-old Ragnatt – from Bensham Lane, Croydon – spent several hours at an address in Birmingham smoking drugs before driving back to London. However, unbeknown to them, West Midlands Police were already on their tails thanks to a quick-witted member of the public who noted down the registration plate on Juggan’s Ford Focus.
And at around 7.50pm on the same day armed police from neighbouring Warwickshire stopped the car at gunpoint near Bicester on the M40. A search of the car uncovered balaclavas, duct tape, about £1,400 in £20 notes and Juggan and Ragnatt’s phones which were seized and forensically examined.
Text messages showed Juggan arranging to meet “Montana” – Ragnatt’s nickname – in London the night before the raid and travelling to Aston where they collect “Castro” (aka McKain) at 2am. Further phone analysis revealed contact with Crockett, from Friary Road in Handsworth Wood, and showed how all four were in near the victims’ home in Coventry at the time of the robbery.
West Midlands Police arrested Crockett from his home address on 17 November where officers also recovered car keys to several stolen vehicles found parked nearby. McKain, from Clarewood Walk, Lambeth, was arrested on 12 December in London after police were called to a different address in the capital for another matter.
In interview, Juggan admitted being involved in the robbery but claimed to have stayed in the kitchen throughout the raid and was “shocked” to discover a baby had been threatened.
Ragnatt initially denied involvement, claiming he’d spent the day at an unnamed associate’s address in Birmingham – but he later admitted the offence when shown CCTV of himself with three others wearing high-vis tabards near the targeted home. Crockett and McKain refused to answer questions in police interview but also later admitted robbery; all four men denied being responsible for threatening the baby.
At Warwick Crown Court on 12 July, Crockett – who also admitted handling stolen goods – was jailed for 12 years, McKain for 11 years and Juggan for 10 years. Ragnatt was sentenced on 24 July and jailed for ten years.
Investigating officer, Detective Constable Tom Simpson from West Midlands Police’s Force Priorities Team, said: “This was a truly sickening case – it’s hard to imagine that anyone could stoop so low as to threaten to injury a baby. There was another young child in the address at the time but thankfully no-one was hurt and the offenders left with a quantity of cash and jewellery.
“A witness did a fantastic job in noting down the VRM of getaway car – and while they spent time smoking drugs in Birmingham we were already fast-tracking enquiries on the Focus to identify Juggan as the likely driver. As they were heading back to London they clearly thought they’d made their escape – but soon came face to face with armed police who stopped the car near junction 10.
“We soon identified Crockett and McKain as the two other men involved – and I’m pleased the court has handed down lengthy prison terms for what was a shocking robbery conspiracy.”