A TEENAGER armed with a hammer played a lead role in a gang that tried to rob a couple walking home from a night out with friends, a court heard.

A couple fled in terror from a group of males armed with what was described as a large sword, knives and rounders bat.

Tomasz Walski - who was wielding a hammer - demanded that the woman hand over her phone.

Aged just 17-years-old at the time he had been drinking for “hours and hours” with friends earlier in the day.

Prosecution barrister, Robin Shellard, told how the couple had been walking along when they spotted a car drive past.

Tomasz Walski (inset) attempted to rob a couple in Watermans Lane, Dibden Purlieu.

Watermans Lane, Dibden Purlieu.

Moments later, two males got out and started following them in Watermans Lane, Dibden Purlieu.

Mr Shellard said: “The next time they looked they were being followed by five males.”

They then saw the group run towards them.

The husband leapt over a fence with the couple eventually locking themselves in their home unscathed and still with their possessions.

Police attended but could not find the car or the defendant, said Mr Shelland.

Appearing before Southampton Crown Court, Walski, 19, of Mayflower Road, Southampton was charged with a single count of attempted robbery.

Tomasz Walski

Tomasz Walski

Of previous good character, he pleaded guilty to the offence which happened on January 4 last year.

The court heard how he was the only one charged in connection with the “terrifying” incident,

Defending, Jodie Mittell argued that Walski is still a young man with the offence committed when he was just shy of his 18th birthday.

Ms Mittell said Walski was remorseful, regretted his actions and that he never intended to hurt anyone.

During sentence, Judge Christopher Parker QC said he was just about persuaded - by the narrowest slither - to suspend his sentence as there was a chance of rehabilitation.

He sent him to a youth offender institute for two years, suspended for two years.

Walski must complete 280 hours of unpaid work and 18 rehabilitation days.

At the end of the hearing Judge Parker warned him to stay out of trouble and added: “You need to leave before I change my mind.”