New leads in hunt for PO raiders

DETECTIVES said they were following up two new leads last night after stopping almost 100 people as part of anniversary checks into a post office robbery.

By Danielle Nuttall

DETECTIVES said they were following up two new leads last night after stopping almost 100 people as part of anniversary checks into a post office robbery.

Officers hunting the two gun-wielding robbers who struck at the Exning Road Post Office in Newmarket had earlier revealed for the first time that a 10-year-old and a 16-year-old girl were in the branch at the time of the raid.

Police yesterday questioned 92 members of the public in the area exactly a week on from the attack in a bid to trace someone who saw what happened.


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Det Sgt Barry Byford, who is heading the investigation, said the checks had helped to uncover two new leads that would be followed up today .

"We have taken the details and will be looking at speaking to them tomorrow," he said.

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"We had no problems at all. Everyone was keen to help in anyway they could. The time of year is quiet which hampered us a little bit."

DS Byford said the fact that two young girls were in the post office at the time and were potential victims of the raiders if the gun seen had been used made his task more urgent than ever.

He said the girls were still deeply distressed by what they witnessed: "They were both very traumatised as a result of what happened and they are not very good at the moment. This is something they are going to live with for a very long time indeed.

"The fact that these girls are so young and they were potential victims makes it a more serious crime and we're determined to find someone who can help us and would be very grateful to hear from any witnesses.

"This was a nasty, nasty incident and we believe someone must have seen something which will lead to the arrest and conviction of the people responsible."

The armed robbers burst into the post office at 5.20pm on Tuesday, December 30. They threatened staff before fleeing in a car with cash. It was the second armed raid on a store in west Suffolk in less than a week and the sixth in Suffolk in the past three.

The raiders were both wearing balaclavas and one was carrying what is believed to be a gun. They fled in a grey G-registration Ford Granada car.

DS Byford said the Granada is believed to have been stolen from the Studlands Park area of Newmarket shortly before the robbery. It was dumped close to Golden Miller Close. A second getaway car thought to have been used by the gang - a blue VW Passat saloon - was found abandoned near Cambridge.

Members of the public in the area of Studlands Park where the Granada was taken and dumped were questioned last night and people in the area of Lolworth, where the Passat was abandoned, were also approached by officers last night in a bid to catch the robbers.

DS Byford was hopeful the anniversary checks - coupled with the inquiries made around the post office a week on from the raid - would provide a crucial breakthrough: "I'm optimistic someone saw the raiders and we're hopeful these checks will provide us with a witness who can help convict the people responsible."

Anyone with information about the raid should contact Suffolk police on 01473 613500 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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