herald

Wednesday 29 March 2017

Female worker punched in face as three armed thugs storm store

CCTV footage shows the female shop worker being punched during the armed robbery at Centra in Monkstown
CCTV footage shows the female shop worker being punched during the armed robbery at Centra in Monkstown
CCTV footage shows the female shop worker being punched during the armed robbery at Centra in Monkstown

A young female shop worker was punched in the face in a shocking armed robbery at a south Dublin convenience store.

Our exclusive CCTV images show the moment a savage criminal punched the young woman seconds after another held a large knife to her face.

Two members of the cowardly three-man gang then pulled the drawers from two tills before escaping with around €700 in cash.

The robbery happened in the Centra at Oliver Plunkett Road in Monkstown shortly after 9.45pm on Monday.

Store owner Dave Curran told the Herald there were two employees, a male and a female, both in their 20s, in the shop when it was raided.

Knives

Two of the raiders were armed with large knives.

They burst through the supermarket's front door and threatened the male employee who was mopping the floor.

"He threatened him with a knife and told him that, if he moved again, he would stick the knife in him," Mr Curran said.

In seconds, the reckless gang approached the counter of the shop, where the female employee was first threatened with a knife by one of the raiders.

As one thug turned his attention to the employee working on the shop floor, the other two raiders went behind the counter and this was when the female employee was punched in the face.

The young woman then stepped back as the two thugs prised the two tills open with their bare hands.

One of the till raiders was wearing white gloves while his accomplice was wearing none.

The duo were masked and wore navy and grey hoodies to hide their identity. Their knife-waving accomplice wore a black hoodie and tracksuit.

The terrifying incident lasted just 30 seconds from the time the raiders entered the shop to fleeing the scene.

The thugs "screamed and roared" numerous threats at the two young staff members during the robbery, as they brandished their large knives.

Gardai said the suspects escaped in the direction of Lower Mounttown Road in Monkstown.

No arrests have yet been made in the case, which is being investigated by Dun Laoghaire gardai, but it is understood officers are investigating the possibility of a notorious local criminal being involved in the incident.

This suspect, who is in his early 20s, was only recently released from jail and has previous convictions for similar crimes in the locality.

Response

Store owner Mr Curran praised the quick response from local gardai.

"Within minutes there were four garda cars in the area," Mr Curran said.

This is the second time the Centra in Monkstown has been the subject of an armed raid. Gardai arrested a suspect after a robbery took place there last August.

Gardai are investigating a number of recent armed robberies from shops in the locality, including from the Gala in Monkstown on Tuesday of last week, which was targeted by a lone raider armed with a knife.

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