TWO men have appeared in court charged with attempting to carry out a robbery at a shop in New Cumnock while armed with a knife.

Connor Murray and Callum McCracken deny a charge of assaulting a member of staff at Premier Stores in Castle by presenting a knife at her and demanding that she hand over money.

Mr Murray, 28, denies a further charge of assaulting a woman by grabbing her round the neck at a footpath outside Dalhanna Drive, threatening her with a knife and demanding money from the woman and her husband.

The Crown claims the alleged attack left the woman severely injured.

The prosecution alleges that both incidents happened on January 22, 2023.

Mr McCracken, 31, is also accused of later discarding his outer clothing at Afton Bridge, New Cumnock, in an attempt to change his appearance, with the Crown alleging that he did so in an attempt to pervert the course of justice.

Mr Murray, of Cairnhill Place, and Mr McCracken, of Brunton Place, pleaded not guilty to all the charges against them when they appeared at Ayr Sheriff Court last week.

Bail was continued for both men, and the pair, who were represented by Steven Maxwell and John Gallagher respectively, will return to court at a later date.

All accused persons reported in the Cumnock Chronicle are considered innocent unless found or later admit to being guilty.