A Denbigh man high on drugs could not remember robbing a man in an alleyway at Abergele.

Defendant Jonathan Craig Edwards, aged 47, threw his victim to the floor and demanded money – before threatening to stab him.

Mold Crown Court heard how Edwards, of Hilary's Terrace in Denbigh, did not have a knife but victim Robert Davies, 63, did not know that and genuinely feared that he could have been killed.

Edwards, who was on prison release licence at the time, admitted robbery at Church Walks in Abergele on the afternoon of August 24, and was jailed for three years.

The court on Wednesday heard that the victim and his family were so traumatised by what had happened that they were considering moving from the area.

Judge Rhys Rowlands said that Edwards would have received a sentence of four and a half years if he had been convicted after trial.

Prosecuting barrister James Coutts told how at 1.15pm Mr Davies was walking to the town centre and as he was going down an alleyway he saw a young man running towards him looking scared.

He was immediately followed by Edwards wearing a grey hooded top and a baseball cap.

"Without warning, he lunged at Mr Davies, grabbing him by his collar," Mr Coutts explained.

He pinned him against a wall using his forearm against his throat and shouted for the victim to give him his money before throwing him to the ground.

The victim hit some railings as he fell causing pain and he hurt his knee and elbow.

But Edwards pinned him down on the ground by his jacket and was screaming at him: "Give me your money, give me your money."

The defendant tried to drag the victim up some steps, further away from the main road, but Mr Davies was able to hold the defendant by his jacket and refused to move.

Mr Davies repeatedly told his attacker that he did not have any money but Edwards started rummaging through his pockets .

He then put his hand in his own pocket and threatened to "knife" him.

Terrified at what could happen Mr Davies stopped fighting back.

Members of the public including an elderly couple approached and the victim shouted at them to call the police.

Edwards fled but it turned out that he had stolen a bank card and ID card.

He was identified from CCTV after he tried to make contactless purchases at a local store.

Mr Coutts said that there was also forensic evidence which linked the defendant.

In two police interviews, he essential made no comment but called officers who identified him "scum".

Mr Davies, in a victim impact statement, said that he was extremely distressed at the time.

It had taken him completely by surprise.

He genuinely feared that he could have been stabbed or killed.

The victim had changed his routine and did not use the alleyway after what had happened.

He had suffered injuries, had lost three days work and suffered flashbacks.

It also had an impact on his disabled wife and on his son and as a family they were considering whether they needed to move from the area.

Defending barrister Simon Killeen said that Edwards had pleaded guilty at an early stage and stressed that no weapon had been produced.

He had been released from custody, arrangements for him to continue to receive a methadone prescription had fallen through and he could not get benefits.

The defendant had found himself homeless, with no money and without the methadone prescription which had had been receiving while in custody.

He foolishly started to use street drugs, that became a spiral and he could not really remember what happened during the robbery.

Mr Killeen said that his client at the time had an insatiable need to get money to buy drugs.

Happily since he returned to custody things were looking up. He was off drugs, his wife in Denbigh had indicated that she would consider taking him back if he remained drug free, and he hoped to have contact with his daughter and grandchildren on his release.

Judge Rowlands said that the defendant had made threats to knife his victim.

"He was not to know that you didn't have a knife upon him," he said. "He thought you were going to kill him."

Force had been used against the victim in a quite protracted incident, he was hurt and it had a bad effect on him and his family.

"He believed he was going to be stabbed and killed by you," said Judge Rowlands.