A Red Deer man was given a three-year prison sentence on Friday in Red Deer provincial court for brandishing a butcher knife to rob an Express 24.
Erwin Kommnick, 39, pleaded guilty to robbing the store on May 30. A charge of assault was withdrawn by the Crown.
The court heard Kommnick was clearly visible on the store’s surveillance video. He came into the store on Erickson Drive with the knife, went behind the counter and grabbed the clerk by the throat.
He took off with $110 in cash and two cartons of cigarettes worth $200.
Defence lawyer John McNaughton said his client was in “financial distress.” He was searching for a job. His vehicle had just been seized. He was not sleeping well and turned to drugs.
MacNaughton said Kommnick does not have a record for similar crime. It was a one-time event.
Kommnick said due to the drugs he did not remember robbing the store and apologized for scaring the store clerk.
“That person is not me,” Kommnick told the court.
Judge Monica Bast said other than Kommnick’s guilty plea there were no mitigating factors to reduce the sentence from the three-year minimum imposed for similar convenience store robberies.
Kommnick was given 110 days credit for the 55 days he has already served in custody.
Bast also ordered a 10-year firearms prohibition and Kommnick must provide a DNA sample.