Wisbech manager relives moment armed raiders terrified staff before fleeing with £1,000 - half an hour after identikit robbery at Outwell
PUBLISHED: 17:39 09 January 2017 | UPDATED: 18:00 09 January 2017
Store manager Kishor Swamy pledged 'we're not leaving' following a robbery at his shop when four men wielding a crowbar and a wrench fled with £1,000.
The gang entered Premier Stores in Norwich Road, Wisbech, at 10.30pm on Friday, threatening staff before stealing money, alcohol and cigarettes.
Half an hour earlier armed robbers struck at a post office and stores five miles away in Outwell, getting away with two tills and again threatening staff.
Kishor Swamy, who took over as Premier Stores manager last June said: “It was so frightening for us.
“Everybody is frightened now; but we’re not leaving.
“For the last 10 years there have been no problems but now it has changed.
“I thought ‘this place is very peaceful, calm and quiet’. “Two years later and the situation has changed.
“There is no control on youngsters – that is the main reason things like this are happening.
“They just do what they want to do, because there’s no-one to control it.”
The four offenders then made off in a getaway car, believed to be a dark Vauxhall Omega, which was parked in Wilberforce Road.
Mr Swamy said: “Three or four people aged 18-20 and with English accents came inside with a crowbar and a hammer.
“One of the youngsters pushed one of my staff from the till to the corner of the shop and told them ‘wait there’.
“With the help of the crowbar he took all the cash from two tills - more than £1,000 - and some cigarettes from the shelf.
“They also took 30 packets of tobacco as well as a bottle of Jack Daniels whiskey and two two-litre bottles of Coca Cola.
“They came in a car and they left in a car. My colleague pressed the panic button and the police came immediately” he added.”
An eyewitness posted on social media: “I went into the shop and there were four young men, thin build, armed with metal bars.”
Another person said: “The one on Norwich Road is my local shop. Such nice guys in there; so awful!”
Police have since released CCTV images of the men in connection with the robbery.
Detective Sergeant Mark Plitsch said: “This was a particularly frightening incident for staff in the shop and we are keen to find those responsible as soon as possible.”
The incident happened 30 minutes after four hooded men armed with crowbars forced their way into the post officer/stores in Church Terrace, Outwell, stealing two tills and threatening a shop worker.
“Just after 10pm four men entered the Post Office on Church Terrace with crowbars and threatened the shop worker,” said police.
“A fifth person waited outside the shop in what is believed to be a green Vauxhall Omega.
“The suspects then stole two tills before fleeing the scene in the getaway vehicle.
“It is then thought they headed in the direction of Wisbech via Marsh Road.
“The four men who entered the shop are all described as wearing hoodies with their faces covered.”
Both robberies come less than three weeks after a masked man armed with a shotgun stormed into Elm Village Store and stole £300 in cash. Elm is three miles away from Outwell.
Anyone with information should call the police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or through their anonymous online form at www.crimestoppers-uk.org.