Woman faces cleaver-welding robber
Police are hunting an armed robber who struck twice in Bathgate in the space of four days - threatening terrified staff with a meat cleaver and hammer.
Police are now linking the two thefts in the West Lothian town which seen a quantity of cash stolen from both business premises.
In the first incident a female employee at a bookmakers on Hopetoun Street was threatened with a meat cleaver at around 7.20pm on Friday (November 2).
The male suspect had previously been using a gaming machine in the betting shop before approaching the female member of staff behind the counter and threatening her with the weapon.
The member of staff then placed a threefigure-sum of cash within a plastic bag and the suspect left the premises.
A Scottish Poppy Appeal tin was also taken.
The female employee and a male customer were unharmed as a result of incident.
In the second armed robbery the Money Station shop on George Street was raided at around 1.20pm on Monday November 5 and staff were threatened with a hammer.
The suspect demanded money and took the contents of a till. No-one was hurt.
In both robberies, the suspect is described as between five feet 10 inches and six feet tall, of slim build, with a long nose and deep sunken eyes, and was wearing dark clothing and black trainers with white soles.
Detective Inspector Paul Batten said: “We have carried out extensive inquiries and believe that the same man is responsible.
“He was carrying a carrier bag in the first robbery, and a black rucksack in the second, which he used to take the money away.
“Fortunately no-one was injured in either incident but staff were left extremely shaken.
“A dedicated team of detectives are investigating these robberies and I am keen to hear from anyone who was in Bathgate town centre on Friday evening or Monday afternoon and may have seen this man before or after each incident.”
Anyone with information should contact Livingston CID on 101, quoting incident 3785 of 2nd November for the bookmakers robbery or 1798 of 5th November for the pawnbroker robbery.
Alternatively contact the charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
Raid The Money Station shop on Bathgate’s George Street was the scene of another incident