A man who held up staff at two petrol stations and a food outlet at knifepoint was finally arrested after carrying out arson attacks on cars on a Warwick housing estate.
And a judge at Warwick Crown Court agreed that Tom Weedon should have a report prepared on him by a psychiatrist as well as a pre-sentence report before he is sentenced.
Weedon, 21, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to two charges of arson with intent to damage property and being reckless whether lives were endangered.
In one arson attack in the early hours of April 2 he set fire to a Saab 93 car and a Peugeot van parked outside a house in Yeats Drive on the Chase Meadow estate in Warwick.
One of the vehicles was on the road and the other on the drive of a house, to which it was feared the fire would spread, and Weedon accepted he was reckless whether the lives of the occupants would be put at risk.
In a second arson attack on the same day, Weedon set fire to a Vauxhall Zafira in Leamington, again being reckless whether the life of another person would be endangered.
On a separate indictment Weedon also pleaded guilty to two charges of robbery, three of possessing a bladed article, a serrated kitchen knife, in public, and one of theft.
The court heard that on November 2 last year Weedon held up a cashier at the BP petrol station in Coventry Road, Warwick, at knifepoint and robbed him of £320 in cash.
On December 5 he stole a Yamaha motorbike, and nine days later he tried to rob a member of staff at the Subway branch on the Shires Retail Park in Leamington, again at knifepoint.
Having fled empty-handed from there, Weedon went on to brandish the knife to rob a cashier at the BP garage in Stratford Road, Warwick, of £450.
After he had entered his pleas, Paul O’Keefe, defending, asked for the case to be adjourned for psychiatric and pre-sentence report.
Agreeing to that, Judge Sylvia de Bertodano remarked: “Clearly he can’t be sentenced without a psychiatric report being prepared.”
Remanding Weedon in custody, she told him: “Particularly in respect of the arson charges it is essential I should have a psychiatric report before you are sentenced.
“But you should be under no illusions. The sentence is likely to be a substantial sentence of custody.”