Surrey man sentenced for two Abbotsford robberies in 2015

Incidents took place within 30 minutes of each other

A Surrey man has been sentenced to a jail term of one year and nine months for committing two Abbotsford robberies within 30 minutes in January 2015.

Jason Degroot, 46, also known as Dominic Dacosta, was recently sentenced in Abbotsford provincial court. His jail term will be followed by two years of probation.

The two robberies occurred on Jan. 20, 2015. The first one was at about 8 p.m. at a business in the 32300 block of South Fraser Way, where he approached the cashier and produced a note demanding cash.

He fled the business, and staff contacted the Abbotsford Police Department (APD).

Officers were on the scene and searching for the suspect in the area, when a second robbery was reported at about 8:30 p.m. at a restaurant in the 32900 block of South Fraser Way. In that case, the robber made a verbal demand for cash.

Based on witness descriptions and security video, investigators quickly determined that the same man was involved in both robberies.

Degroot was located a few minutes later and was arrested after a brief foot pursuit.

At his recent sentencing, Degroot was also convicted of crimes in Red Deer, Alta., dating back to 2012.

These included theft and two counts of possession of stolen property. He was sentenced to time already served on those charges.

According to the provincial court database, Degroot has several prior convictions for robbery and theft, as well as assault with a weapon, theft, breaching his probation and possession of property obtained by crime.