Robber attacks family-run post office
A DISTRESSED shopkeeper today expressed her anger after a knife-wielding robber struck at her family-run business.Jean Clarke, owner of a Post Office store in Stowmarket, has spoken out after a balaclava-clad robber targeted her Wolsey Road shop yesterday.
A DISTRESSED shopkeeper today expressed her anger after a knife-wielding robber struck at her family-run business.
Jean Clarke, owner of a Post Office store in Stowmarket, has spoken out after a balaclava-clad robber targeted her Wolsey Road shop yesterday.
The 42-year-old was disturbed by a loud noise and went into the shop to discover the armed man threatening her husband David.
Mrs Clarke, 42, said: "I'm very angry as we work hard to build up a business.
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"We don't make much money running this small shop.
"We work seven days a week, and more than 12 hours a day, and then someone just comes in and thinks they have got the right to demand what we have made from our hard work.
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"We are here to serve the community."
The robber, who struck at approximately 7pm, got away with cash and cigarettes.
Mrs Clarke said: "He came in wearing a balaclava and wielding a knife and demanded money, which my husband gave him.
"He wanted my husband to open the safe but we haven't got one.
"He demanded cigarettes so my husband grabbed a load and gave them to him but he said he just wanted Embassy.
"I came down from upstairs because I thought my husband had fallen over or something.
"I challenged the bloke and he ran out of the shop.
"I didn't recognise who it was but he had a local accent.
"Apparently there was car at the top of the road waiting to take him away."
Suffolk police today began house-to-house enquiries in a search to track down the armed man.
Officers believe there were a number of people outside the building.
Mike Nunn, Suffolk police spokesman, said: "The offender ran out of the shop and towards Kings Mead Close.
"There were a number of people in the area, particularly outside the store who we would like to speak to.
"Today, officers are expected to start house-to-house enquiries, take witness statements and arrange victim support."
Police have also revealed a description of the robber. He is described as a white male, approximately 5ft 7ins, and was wearing a light-coloured top, light blue trousers, trainers and gloves.
Although the store itself was still open to customers, the post office section of the shop was closed.
The robbery came as officers are investigating weekend ram-raids on stores in Haverhill and Exning, believed to be the work of a major crime organisation behind almost 100 robberies and raids across East Anglia.
The raids happened in the early hours of Saturday. In the first, a five-strong gang drove a Jeep into the Mace store in Exning, but escaped empty-handed.
Forty minutes later a gang drove a stolen Vauxhall Astra into the Sainsbury's garage in Haverhill and fled with a haul of cigarettes.
Anyone with information about the Stowmarket robbery should contact Suffolk police on 01284 774100 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.