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The men involved in a dramatic armed robbery in Auckland's busy CBD at lunchtime on Tuesday may have used the same stolen car in a bag snatch last month.
And police are hunting two other men after a violent robbery in Wellington 10 hours later, from which the young victim was taken to hospital with a broken nose, broken teeth, cuts and bruising.
Police in both cities are calling on the public for help in finding the people responsible for the robberies, which, uncannily, happened on identically named streets.
The earlier robbery happened about 12.50pm: two Armourguard security staff were restocking an ATM at the Flight Centre on the corner of Victoria and High Sts in Auckland's CBD when a man brandishing a gun appeared. He demanded the cash box and then ran to a car waiting in a nearby bus stop.
The driver took off through a busy Queen St intersection.
Police said the Subaru Legacy, registration number BRT315, was stolen on December 17 from Kohimarama. It was then used in a bag snatch at the Quiki Mart on Great North Rd in Henderson on January 19.
Yesterday, they released photos of the men they wanted to talk to over the bag snatch, in a bid to identify them.
"[Tuesday's] armed offender was wearing a balaclava - or similar - over his face. There is no CCTV footage from the scene of the incident," said Auckland police spokeswoman Noreen Hegarty.
"Police are in the process of interviewing a number of witnesses to [Tuesday's] events but any additional witnesses who haven't already spoken to an officer should make contact."
About 10.30pm on Tuesday, an 18-year-old was robbed and assaulted by at least two other men in an alleyway connecting Victoria St and Edward St in central Wellington.
"The victim received a broken nose, broken teeth, cuts, swelling and bruising to the back of his head, face and mouth, which required hospitalisation," said Detective Sergeant Corey Watts.
"The men are both described as male Maori, about 25 years old. One of the offenders was tall and of large build, with bald hair, and was wearing a tidy buttoned-down collared shirt with blue and white checks.
"He also had a square-shaped cubic zirconia earring in his right ear."
The other offender was taller than his co-offender, and thin, Mr Watts said.
"A third man who was also in the vicinity at the time of the alleged incident is described as being short, of thin build. He was wearing a black cap and hooded sweatshirt. He had long, curly hair protruding from under his cap and had large headphones around his neck."
Mr Watts wants to speak to anyone who witnessed the assault, or saw anything suspicious in the area at the time of the assault.