Armed raiders target Co-op

DETECTIVES are appealing for information after two armed robbers targeted an Essex convenience store and made off with around £7,000.Terrified customers looked on in horror as the masked men threatened shopworkers with a crowbar and a sawn-off shotgun.

By Roddy Ashworth

DETECTIVES are appealing for information after two armed robbers targeted an Essex convenience store and made off with around £7,000.

Terrified customers looked on in horror as the masked men threatened shopworkers with a crowbar and a sawn-off shotgun.

The robbery happened at about 9.15pm on Thursday at the Co-op store in Old Heath Road, Colchester.


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The raiders forced the male and female members of staff present to open the safe and then made off with the cash.

The first robber was described as white, about 6ft tall and wearing a light coloured three-quarter length jacket, a grey top, white tracksuit trousers and black trainers.

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The second was also white but shorter, wearing a blue three-quarter length hooded jacket with a white stripe running down the hood and the back of the jacket.

He had black tracksuit trousers with a white stripe down the leg.

Both were described as in their early 20s and had their heads covered with balaclavas.

The pair made off in a dark, old-style Vauxhall Cavalier which had been parked in Cavendish Drive.

Yesterday a police spokeswoman said that no-one was injured during the raid but that two members of the public, a man and a woman, and the staff involved had been left shocked and shaken by the incident.

She added officers would be contacting officers in Benfleet, where a Co-op store was raided earlier in the day to see if the two incidents were connected.

Police have appealed for any witnesses to the robbery to come forward.

They are particularly keen to speak with anyone who was in the shop at around 9pm and may have seen the men prior to the robbery, or anybody who knows the whereabouts of the car.

Yesterday a spokesman for the east of England Co-operative Society said: “First and foremost we are extremely grateful that no staff or members of the public were physically hurt during what must have been a shocking ordeal.

“We commend the actions of our staff, those of the public and the swift response from the police.

“We don't take this lightly and fully expect that the perpetrators will be bought to justice.”

Anybody with information is asked to contact Detective Constable Tim Marshall on 01206 762212 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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