Police were last night hunting for a group of young thieves who calmly walked into a South Auckland dairy and made off with stolen goods - despite shopkeepers arming themselves with hockey sticks.
Counties Manukau Police yesterday labelled the teenagers' actions "deplorable and disgusting" after CCTV footage of the incident was uploaded on to Facebook by the shop's owners.
One young woman is seen walking behind the counter and opening a cabinet with cigarettes. She begins loading up her arms with boxes of cigarettes, even as a shopkeeper arms himself with a hockey stick.
More teenagers then storm the shop, with one holding a long stick she uses to hit the workers. At one point, one of the group can be seen outside the door - holding a toddler.
The youngsters begin taking items, including a worker's iPhone 6, from the counter. Another attempts to take off with the till, but is unsuccessful.
A co-owner of Redhill Superette in Papakura, Indy Purewal, said about 10 teenagers, who he believed were all locals, came to the store about 5pm on Sunday wanting to buy cigarettes.
The workers refused to serve them as they didn't have identification.
About half the group started yelling at the two staffers and taking items, while others remained outside, Mr Purewal said.
The youths threw sticks at the male staff who defended themselves with a hockey stick and cricket bat.
"The boys were really scared - they were trying to defend themselves and the store," Mr Purewal said.
Counties Manukau district prevention manager, Inspector Dave Glossop, said police were still investigating the incident and were treating the matter very seriously.
"I've watched the footage myself. They were running amok. Their actions were deplorable."
Mr Glossop said police in the area had seen a new trend where offenders were a lot younger.
Officers had been running workshops for dairy and liquor store owners in the area to advise them what to do in such a situation.
Mr Purewal said the family had owned the store for 21 years and had been robbed about 17 or 18 times.
"We average about one robbery a year. It's not just us, there's other businesses and there's been quite a few break-ins at houses as well.
"I shared the video online because I think people need to be aware this is going on."