A masked robber was snared by detectives thanks to a Facebook message he sent to a friend.
Kevin Bruce raided Coral at Cornhill Shopping Arcade on October 15 last year.
Bruce, 37, appeared at the High Court in Aberdeen yesterday along with Anthony Jackson, 39, where the pair admitted carrying out a raid each at two different bookmakers.
The pair were due to stand trial accused of the Coral robbery, and a raid on William Hill bookmakers at Summerhill Court on Octover 17 last year.
Jackson admitted the William Hill robbery, and was acquitted of the Coral raid. While Bruce, 37, admitted the Coral robbery, and was acquitted of the William Hill incident.
The court was told police traced a friend of Bruce who said she had not seen him but recently received a message from him on social media.
Prosecutor Derick Nelson said: “The message said: ‘I might be going to do something stupid. You will see it on the news’.”
The High Court in Aberdeen heard Bruce and another man entered Coral at 6.45pm wearing masks. Bruce climbed on to the counter and shouted threats at staff to hand over cash. Several customers ran out and called police. They got money from the till and fled with £139.39.
At 11.10am on October 17, a woman was working alone at William Hill when Jackson and another man ran in wearing masks.
Mr Nelson told the court: “They immediately began shouting and told staff and customers ‘nobody move’. Jackson then shouted at the staff member to get money from the safe.
“She opened the safe and gave him £300 although he shouted at her to open the main safe.”
When this could not be done, said Mr Nelson, Jackson stole the staff member’s purse.
He and the other man fled with £500 – but dropped £300 as they ran off, scattering cash on the road.
Bruce was caught after police studied CCTV footage of the lift at his flat at Rosehill Court, Aberdeen, and noticed him wearing the same clothes as those worn during the Coral robbery.
When officers arrested Jackson in Port Elphinstone, they found his shoes matched an imprint found at William Hill.
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Speaking after the case Detective Sergeant Sam Harris said: “Anthony Jackson and Kevin Bruce put innocent members of the public through a distressing ordeal for their own selfish gain and we welcome their guilty pleas. I would also like to thank the public who assisted us with our inquiries.”
The court heard both men were unemployed at the time of the incidents and have previous convictions for robbery-related offences. Bruce was jailed for seven years in 2007 for robbery and Jackson was jailed for nine years in 2010 for attempted robbery.
Lord Armstrong deferred sentencing for reports until August 26. The case will call at the High Court in Edinburgh.
An earlier version of this report featured an incorrect photograph of Kevin Bruce. The picture we used was of a man with no connection to the case and we apologise for the error.