Ipswich: Have-a-go heroine - ‘Gunman said he would shoot me’,
A HAVE a-go heroine today told of the terrifying moment when she foiled an attempted armed robbery while staring down the barrel of a gun.
Despite being traumatised by the masked gunman and his male accomplice, the 52-year-old shop assistant vowed she would not be bullied out of her job at the Spar store in Woodbridge Road, Ipswich.
Although tearful, the mother-of-two – who asked not to be named – relived her ordeal in the hope it would help catch the robbers who entered the store at around 9.45pm on Monday.
“I had just emptied the metal cash box from one till and was sorting out the ten and 20 pound notes,” she said.
“I glanced up as I had heard someone come through the door.
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“He paused for a second, then walked round, pointed the gun in my face and said ‘give me the money’.
“I said no. I think I slammed the till drawer down and he said ‘give me the money or I will shoot you – I will shoot you’.
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“He leaned across the till and I think I pushed him away.”
The robbers then left the store, leaving the assistant to push the panic alarm and the shop’s buzzer to alert a fellow member of staff who was at the rear of the store.
She then collapsed to the floor where she was found shaking and curled up in a ball.
The assistant said: “At the time I wasn’t scared, but afterwards I think I just slid down the wall because I realised what had happened. I could have been killed. I have two kids, but I didn’t think of that until it was all over with.
“It’s frightening now because he’s seen me and I don’t know what he looks like. All I could see was his eyes.
“I remember looking at his eyes and I will remember him by his eyes.”
The shop assistant, who has worked at the store for 13 years, added she is determined to return to work.
“I’m not going to let a bully like that get to me. I will definitely go back.
“I just want him caught, so he doesn’t put anyone else through what I have been through.”
Although it was the third armed raid on the shop in eight years, following others in July 2004 and August 2010, it is the first one the woman had been involved in.
Both offenders fled the shop empty-handed.