Robbery and arson keep police busy

By Alexandra Newlove

1 comment
Domino's Pizza on Water St, Whangarei, was the scene of an aggravated robbery on Wednesday night, the third in the city in a week. Photo / John Stone
Domino's Pizza on Water St, Whangarei, was the scene of an aggravated robbery on Wednesday night, the third in the city in a week. Photo / John Stone

A third aggravated robbery in a week, a pedestrian hit by a car and an arson attack formed part of a busy Wednesday night for Whangarei police.

Staff at the Water St Domino's Pizza were recovering yesterday after a man entered the store at 10pm on Wednesday and brandished a knife at one worker, leaving him with a nick on his face. The offender, who was captured on CCTV, then made off with a small amount of cash.

Franchise owner Jayesh Madhav said the staff member was recovering well. The victim had been offered counselling from the company, as would other staff.

Domino's New Zealand general manager Scott Bush said he was concerned about the robbery and the offer of support to staff was open-ended.

"They are a close team there and we want to make sure they are all comfortable working there," he said.

Police would like to hear from anyone who witnessed the robbery or any suspicious activity in the area between 9.45pm and 10.15pm. It was the third aggravated robbery in Whangarei in a week.

Tikipunga Super Liquor was robbed last Wednesday at 9.30pm, when three hooded people with weapons entered the shop and took cash, cigarettes and alcohol. On Monday afternoon, Otangarei's Jack St dairy was targeted by three men carrying weapons, reported to be sticks with knives attached. Police said the incidents were not necessarily linked.

Before the Domino's attack, police had been dealing with a two car crash which seriously injured a pedestrian, just up the road from the pizza outlet.

Northland road policing manager Inspector Wayne Ewers said two vehicles were driving along Maunu Rd through the intersection with Western Hills Drive, in the direction of the hospital, when one clipped the other. One of the cars spun out and hit a woman in her 40s, who was on the footpath. A member of the public gave her CPR before an ambulance transported her to hospital in a serious condition.

Rounding out a busy night, police were called about 4am yesterday to a suspected arson on Cairnfield Rd, Otangarei, where a car parked in a driveway was ablaze. Police spokeswoman Sarah Kennett said the fire was being treated as suspicious.

- Northern Advocate

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