A man has been jailed for six-and-a-half years in total following an attempted armed robbery at a convenience store in Clacton.

The incident happened at Kwik Serve Convenience Store on High Street at 9.49pm on 7 January.

According to Essex Police, Scott Cotier, 22, pleaded guilty to attempted robbery and possession of an imitation firearm with intent to cause fear of violence and was sentenced for four-and-a-half years and two years respectively, which will run concurrently.

Cotier entered the store and produced a gun, demanding the lone shopworker handed over the contents of the till. The member of staff “swatted away” the gun and closed the till, before the offender left the store on foot.

Local officers were able to identify Cotier by reviewing the shop’s CCTV, and fingerprints and handprints lifted from the scene were found to be a DNA match for him. He was arrested the following day.

Clacton CID investigating officer, PC Steven Baldwin, said: “I am glad that, by pleading guilty, Cotier has taken some responsibility for his abhorrent actions. The victim showed immense bravery in swatting away what he believed was a loaded gun, and refused to hand over anything from the till.

“More importantly, he managed to get himself to safety before he called the police. I hope that this sentence will bring some closure for the victim, who has continued to live with a fear of violence since the incident. No one should feel unsafe in their workplace, and today’s sentence proves that.”