A BRAZEN thief tried to rob a pregnant woman of her handbag at Troon Railway Station.

Craig Brown of Calder Park in Lochwinnoch, on the same day, broke into a house on St Meddans Street and stole a laptop and a wallet.

He was sentenced to prison for 16 months when he appeared at Ayr Sheriff Court on Tuesday, August 20.

The 39-year-old found himself in Ayrshire after falling asleep on a train. But it was at the Troon platform he targeted a woman who was six months pregnant, Fiscal Depute Laurin Campbell told the court.

Ms Campbell explained: “The locus of this attempted robbery was Troon Railway Station. At around 1.25pm the complainer who was six months pregnant was sat at the benches waiting for a train. The accused was pacing and moving about the platform.

“He asked if the train was arriving soon and she confirmed this with the accused replying ‘oh right’. He seemed under the influence.

“The accused then went into his pocket to retrieve something and lots of blue pills fell out.”

Ms Campbell told the court that Brown continued to approach the woman before trying to seize her handbag.

“The complainer saw that the accused was a drug user and did not trust him”, Ms Campbell said.

“He grabbed her bag and the witness struggled with him.”

Brown kept pulling at the bag and struggled violently before leaving the scene.

His victim, distressed at the attack, was consoled by members of the public but told them “she did not need help and she just wanted to go home”.

Later, Brown gained entry to a house in Troon where he robbed a man who was working from home. Ms Campbell told the court: “The witness heard the letterbox rattle and thought it was the postman. He came downstairs and saw the accused and said ‘hello’ and saw he was an intruder.”

The thief already had the laptop in his hands and lifted the man’s wallet.

“The complainer grabbed the accused and both ended up on the floor.

“On being cautioned and charged, the accused replied ‘this isnae me’ to stealing the handbag and ‘I’ve no idea’ to stealing the laptop.”

Brown’s solicitor Mr Paul Lynch told the court his client suffered from drug addiction and found it difficult to cope with his father’s terminal illness in recent years.

Mr Lynch said: “One of a number of recurring themes is Mr Brown’s genuine remorse for his behaviour. He has great shame and disgust.

“There’s no mention of violence in Mr Brown’s record. He appears sincere in attempts to overcome serious alcohol and drug issues.”

Mr Lynch explained Brown was in Paisley town centre before the robbery and said: “He was offered Diazepam which he took. He then fell asleep on the train by himself.”

Mr Lynch said his client had ongoing personal battles: “Latterly it was the diagnosis of terminal cancer that his father received. Mr Brown had an addiction problem and found himself relapsing in 2017.

“His father’s wish was he stopped his addiction issues. It’s a matter of deep regret. It was his father’s dying wish.”

Despite the lawyer’s submission to place Brown on a supervised court order, Sheriff Scott Pattison sent him to jail for a period of 16 months.

He said: “I’ve listened carefully to everything Mr Lynch has said. The simple fact is that the charges are too serious to be dealt with anything but custody.”