Bar ser­vice only

Central Leader - - Front Page - By Janie Smith

A LIQUOR store owner bru­tally beaten by rob­bers ear­lier this year has found a way to keep his store open at night without risk­ing his safety.

The man, who did not want to be named, had a small win­dow built into the Three Kings Liquor Store’s barred se­cu­rity door.

Cus­tomers are served through the door at night, or if sus­pi­cious peo­ple are seen hang­ing around out­side.

“I feel bet­ter,” the owner says.

Three men have been ar­rested for the May at­tack, which left the owner and his son with se­ri­ous in­juries.

Af­ter the in­ci­dent, he started clos­ing the store early, which cost him money.

He’s now stay­ing open un­til 11pm and serv­ing through the win­dow.

His son still works at the store part time and uses the new se­cu­rity mea­sure.

“I would ring at 9pm to see what’s hap­pen­ing but now I know he shuts the door and uses the win­dow.”

He has also had pos­i­tive feed­back from cus­tomers.

Other liquor stores have not taken such strin­gent mea­sures.

Kings­land Liquor Cen­tre owner San­jay Jam­nadas says their doors are “wide open” while the store is serv­ing.

“We are next to a ser­vice sta­tion that is 24 hours, so we don’t re­ally have an is­sue of be­ing in a dark­ened cor­ner.”

Do­min­ion Wines and Spir­its worker Vanisa Narayan says the shop also keeps its doors open un­til 11pm.

She hadn’t heard of any liquor stores hav­ing se­cu­rity win­dows.

Mt Roskill com­mu­nity con­sta­ble Graeme Bruges says it’s a rea­son­able op­tion for staff safety and has al­ready been adopted by ser­vice sta­tions.

He is work­ing with busi­ness own­ers in Three Kings to im­prove safety and the shop­ping en­vi­ron­ment.

“We’ve got dis­cus­sions go­ing on about what they would like to see to make the precinct safer and a more at­trac­tive shop­ping area.”

One of the first steps is to set up a sys­tem where the busi­nesses com­mu­ni­cate with each other by email and get to know one an­other.

At a re­cent Mt Roskill Com­mu­nity Board meet­ing, board mem­ber con­sta­ble Nigel Turn­bull said he had been in early dis­cus­sions with groups like the Pa­cific War­dens, Neigh­bour­hood Sup­port and Hous­ing New Zealand about set­ting up a com­mu­nity cen­tre.

“It would be a place where peo­ple could use the fa­cil­i­ties for com­mu­nity pa­trols and get-to­geth­ers for peo­ple who feel anx­ious about go­ing to the po­lice sta­tions to deal with is­sues.”

Photo: JA­SON OX­EN­HAM

Safety first: The Three Kings Liquor Store can now stay open at night and serve cus­tomers through this se­cu­rity win­dow.

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