Gunman ties up shopkeeper in raid

POLICE are hunting for a gunman who tied up and robbed a shopkeeper in Colchester on Saturday night.

Annie Davidson

POLICE are hunting for a gunman who tied up and robbed a shopkeeper in Colchester on Saturday night.

The shop owner, who is in his thirties, was pulling down the shutter on the Happy Shopper in Russell Court, off Stalin Road, at about 9pm when he was approached by a man wearing a black balaclava and carrying a handgun.

Police said the victim was forced back into the shop, tied up and a four figure sum of cash was stolen along with a large number of cigarettes.


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The shopkeeper's van, a white Ford Transit with the registration plate BL52 BOJ, was also stolen in the raid and was found burnt out in Fingringhoe Road, Colchester, not long after the robbery.

The shopkeeper was shocked but physically uninjured in the ordeal which ended when a passer-by heard his cries for help at about 10pm.

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An Essex Police spokesman said: “The shopkeeper, a man in his thirties, was locking up the shop at about 9pm and as he was pulling the metal shutter down he was approached by a man wearing a black balaclava with eye and mouth holes, holding what appeared to be a handgun.

“As the shopkeeper was forced to go back into the shop he was aware of another person in there but we do not have a description of this suspect.

“The shopkeeper was tied up in the back of the shop and a four figure sum of cash was stolen along with a considerable amount of cigarettes

“The suspects stole the shop van, a white Ford Transit index BL52 BOJ which was found burnt out in Fingringhoe Road very shortly after the robbery.

“The shopkeeper was found by a passer-by who heard his calls for help at about 10pm.

“He was taken to hospital as a precaution but fortunately only suffered shock from his ordeal.”

The robber was about 5ft 8ins tall, medium build, and wearing a long sleeved grey top.

Police have appealed for anyone who saw anything suspicious near the shop, or who saw the van being driven or dumped after the robbery to contact them.

Anyone with information should call Colchester CID on 0300 333 4444.

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