A man was stabbed in Sainbury’s as he tried to stop thieves stealing from one of the supermarket’s branches in Poole.
Connor Beckett, 23, and Jack Torpey were jailed this week after they attempted to take a number of Jack Daniels whiskey bottles from Sainsbury’s on Pitwines Close at around 4.35pm on February 10 last year, police said in a statement.
The pair, who had put a number of bottles in a trolly, were apparently trying to leave without paying when they were approached by a member of staff.
Police said Beckett quickly became aggressive and punched one of the staff members in the face, knocking them to the floor.
Beckett also fell over during the altercation and some of the whisky bottles smashed. At this point, another staff member went to restrain Torpey.
Then a member of the public who was entering the shop came over to assist the shop assistants by attempting to hold down Beckett, the statement said.
But the pair completed up struggling on the floor and Beckett was able to get back on his feet, pulling out a knife from his pocket.
As more people tried to detain Beckett, he became increasingly aggressive and Torpey started shouting at people to get off him.
Beckett then picked up a wallet that had dropped out of the man’s pocket during their struggle.
The man tried to grab hold of him to get it back when Beckett stabbed him in the left side of his abdomen, police said.
The defendants apparently managed to escape from the scene, taking a bottle of whisky and the wallet with them.
Watch: Man who chased motorbike thieves jailed for 10 years after killing one in fatal crash
The victim, in his 50s, collapsed to the floor and members of the public went to his aid before paramedics arrived.
He was taken to hospital for treatment to the stab wound, as well as injuries to his hand and head.
He remained in intensive care for a week.
The offenders went on to use his bank cards a number of times that evening and the next day, police said.
They carried out successful transactions of more than £40 but also made a number of unsuccessful attempts to pay for items.
Both Torpey and Beckett were arrested on February 12 2020.
Beckett was jailed for 12 years on Friday at Bournemouth Crown Court after being found guilty at trial of inflicting grievous bodily harm with intent and possessing a knife in public.
The 23-year-old had previously admitted to two charges of theft.
His accomplice Torpey was sentenced to eight months in prison on Wednesday after admitting to affray and theft.
Detective Sergeant Garry Knight, of Bournemouth CID, said: “The violence displayed by Jack Torpey, and particularly Connor Beckett, was shocking and the actions of the shop staff and members of the public at the scene were truly courageous in the face of that.
“I would like to thank these people not only for the courage they displayed on the day but also for supporting the investigation and giving evidence in court.
“Thanks to the assistance of these individuals, we were able to bring these men to justice for their crimes.
“I especially want to praise the victim, who suffered a horrific injury as a result of his heroic attempts to assist the shop staff.”
Watch: Terrorist stabbed three people to death in less than a minute, court told