Raiders smash and grab cash

PUBLISHED: 10:52 02 February 2006 | UPDATED: 11:33 04 May 2010

RAIDERS crashed a one-and-a-half ton Jeep into a Sutton store on Saturday night, smashing open the shop-front and dragging away a cash machine containing thousands of pounds. Brazen thieves drove a Jeep Cherokee into the One Stop shop, in High Street jus

RAIDERS crashed a one-and-a-half ton Jeep into a Sutton store on Saturday night, smashing open the shop-front and dragging away a cash machine containing thousands of pounds.

Brazen thieves drove a Jeep Cherokee into the One Stop shop, in High Street just before 11pm - an hour after staff had locked up for the night. They smashed a hole large enough for one of the raiders to climb in and drag out the cash machine with a large leather tow rope.

It is the second time the One Stop store has had its ATM machine stolen following a ram-raid - masked thieves made off with a stand-alone cashpoint in May 2004.

One eyewitness, who asked not to be named, said of Saturday's raid: "It was all done and dusted in a minute and a half."

"When they'd made a big enough hole, they dragged the machine out into the middle of the road. They had a get-away car - a Cavalier - and they picked up the machine, put it in the back and drove off."

Up to four raiders, all dressed in dark clothing that obscured their faces, made a swift escape in a dark red Cavalier with gold stripes along the body, leaving behind the Jeep.

It is not clear if the vehicle was stolen, but forensic teams are now examining it for any evidence.

Our witness said one High Street resident had seen the dark red Vauxhall Cavalier driving slowly around the area earlier on in the week.

A spokesman for One Stop said he could not disclose exactly how much money was in the machine.

"No other items were taken in the raid, but a number of items were damaged in the incident," he said.

"Staff worked extremely hard to restore the shop to its trading condition, and the only loss of trade for customers was the following day."

The previous raid in 2004 brought about a district council planning application a year later to erect bollards outside the store to prevent another ram-raid.

Sutton Parish Council, concerned about access for people with wheelchairs or pushchairs, questioned the district council on the precise location of the bollards, and parish clerk Rosie Seymour said the next thing Sutton council heard about the bollard plans was that the district council had rejected the idea.

A police spokesman urged anyone with any information to come forward.

"Officers would like to hear from anyone in this area at the time of the ram-raid, who may have seen what happened, or anything suspicious."

INFO: contact Ely Police Station on 0845 456 4564, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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