A KNIFEMAN was caught after the shop assistant he robbed recognised him.

Although Scott Carey pulled up his hood and covered his face during the hold-up at the Premier store in Wigan Road, Westhoughton, he left his disguise off outside the shop.

A shop worker recognised him as an acquaintance of her brother after viewing the CCTV.

"I can't believe he would do something like this," she told police.

Hunter Gray, prosecuting, told Bolton Crown Court how the worker was working in the shop at 6pm on July 12 when a man walked in wearing a black and red coat and black, sack-like material covering his face.

The Bolton News: Premier store, WesthoughtonPremier store, Westhoughton

He went behind the counter where the shop worker was working.

"He was standing staring at her for about five seconds and then pulled out what she describes as a massive kitchen knife and pointed it towards her," said Mr Gray.

"She thought that she was going to be stabbed."

The robber demanded money but the employee began screaming and crying and was comforted by colleague Alison Mathers, who opened the till and handed over about £100.

The two-minute incident was caught on CCTV and when she saw it she realised it was 51-year-old Carey, who she had known for 13 years.

In a victim statement read out in court she said that she has since had sleepless nights and nightmares.

Louise Cowen, said Carey, of Pinfold Close, Westhoughton, is "sincerely remorseful" and has recently been taking positive steps to address his drug addiction.

Carey, who has 42 convictions for 94 previous offences, including robbery, burglary and theft, pleaded guilty to robbery and possessing a knife.

Miss Cowen said he was ashamed of frightening the worker.

"He had no intention of using the bladed article in the way she feared," she added.

Judge Graeme Smith sentenced him to three years and four months in jail.

"What happened was terrifying for those involved. She didn't know, at that stage, that you were someone who knew her," the judge told Carey.

"That is all down, to put it bluntly, to your pure selfishness. You simply put your need for money ahead of all other considerations."