Ruth is the human interest reporter and a photographer for the Bay of Plenty Times.

Robbery footage reveals shopkeeper's terrifying ordeal

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Ajil Ma Thai​ brother's dairy was robbed on Sunday night when two men entered the shop and slammed a hammer down on the front counter. Photo/John Borren
Ajil Ma Thai​ brother's dairy was robbed on Sunday night when two men entered the shop and slammed a hammer down on the front counter. Photo/John Borren

Dramatic footage of a terrifying robbery that left a shopkeeper traumatised has been released as police hunt for the offenders.

The CCTV footage, released by the shop owner, shows two men entering the Cameronian
Dairy between 16th and 17th Ave on Sunday about 5.10pm.

CCTV footage of the robbery at the Cameronian Dairy on Sunday. Images/supplied
CCTV footage of the robbery at the Cameronian Dairy on Sunday. Images/supplied

One of the men then slams a hammer down on the front counter, while the other acts as a look-out at the front of the shop.

The terrified woman then runs upstairs to call the police while the offenders steal 25 packets of cigarettes and the till's cash box.

The robbery was one of two carried out in the city within a 24-hour period.

Ajil Ma Thai, whose brother owns the Cameronian Dairy, said the shop worker was left traumatised by the incident and had taken the day off work yesterday.

Mr Ma Thai said it appeared the two men knew what they were doing and were familiar with the set up of the shop.

Both men left in a dark-coloured Nissan sedan which travelled down 17th Ave and up Clarke St, behind Tauranga Hospital.

About 20 hours after that robbery, two men armed with a wheel brace entered the 14th Ave Dairy, cornered the owner and took an unknown amount of cash and cigarettes.

Two men robbed the 14th Ave Dairy just after 1pm yesterday. Photo/George Novak
Two men robbed the 14th Ave Dairy just after 1pm yesterday. Photo/George Novak

Owner of 14th Ave Dairy, Phil, said the two men were very aggressive. "They didn't hurt me, though, they could have if I didn't do what they told me.

"They told me to open the till and 'give me your f****** money'. They said that about four or five times. Then they wanted the cigarettes."

The incident lasted about five minutes with the two men brandishing a wheel brace, he said.

The two men left the 14th Ave Dairy in what was described as a dark-coloured saloon vehicle.

Police did not respond to a question from the Bay of Plenty Times as to whether they believed the two robberies were linked.

Detective Sergeant Alan Kingsbury said police would like to speak to anyone who recognised the men captured on CCTV footage of the robbery of the Cameronian Dairy.

"Someone in the community would have knowledge of those involved and could hold the key to solving the robbery."

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