Rob­bers strike twice in 9 weeks

Macclesfield Express - - FRONT PAGE - STU­ART GREER

ADEFIANT shop owner has vowed to stay put de­spite be­ing hit by armed rob­beries twice in two months.

The Queen’s Av­enue Con­ve­nience Store in Hurds­field was tar­geted on Jan­uary 24, at around 7.45pm.

Armed with a knife, the rob­ber threat­ened a mem­ber of staff be­fore get­ting away with cash and to­bacco.

Po­lice have ar­rested a 14-year-old boy on sus­pi­cion of rob­bery. He has been bailed pend­ing fur­ther en­quiries.

The ter­ri­fy­ing raid comes two months after a pre­vi­ous rob­bery at the shop. The 43-year-old shop owner, who is too afraid to be named, said he was dev­as­tated by the dou­ble blow.

He said: “The first time was shock­ing. Po­lice started pop­ping by to see we were okay and the com­mu­nity were very sup­port­ive. But we never ex­pected the same thing so soon. [In the lat­est in­ci­dent] the young man came in with a very big knife and pointed at my friend. He was work­ing alone and was very scared.

“The rob­ber forced him be­hind the counter and made him hand over cash.”

The of­fender used a white car­rier bag to carry his hoard and fled the scene. He has been de­scribed as white, be­tween 5’4” and 5’7” tall, and slim.

He was wear­ing black cloth­ing and had this face cov­ered.

The busi­ness, which has CCTV, is now step­ping up se­cu­rity.

The shop owner added: “We will not let this beat us. We have worked hard to be­come part of this com­mu­nity and like it here.”

Re­fer­ring to the thief be­hind the lat­est raid, he said: “This is just one very bad per­son who is des­per­ate for money. He needs to be caught.”

The po­lice he­li­copter was used in the search for the rob­ber. Po­lice are now analysing CCTV images and a fin­ger­print found at the scene.

PC Francesca Homer said: “For­tu­nately no­body has been in­jured dur­ing the in­ci­dent how­ever staff have un­der­stand­ably been left very shaken by the or­deal.

“We are do­ing all we can to trace those re­spon­si­ble and we are work­ing with staff mem­bers to of­fer any ad­vice and sup­port needed.

Any­one with in­for­ma­tion is urged to call po­lice on 101 quot­ing in­ci­dent num­ber 814 of Jan­uary 1016.”

Ex­press read­ers used Face­book to show their sup­port.

Dianne Cooke said: “The guys who work there are lovely and very kind and help­ful.”

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