Robber threatened staff with machete

Machete Raid: Kettering, Co-op, Stamford Rd (near Barnwell St) man armed with a machete robbed tills after threatening staff. ' 'Tuesday 7th February 2012

Machete Raid: Kettering, Co-op, Stamford Rd (near Barnwell St) man armed with a machete robbed tills after threatening staff. ' 'Tuesday 7th February 2012

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Staff at a convenience store in Kettering were left badly shaken when a masked man armed with a machete robbed the store.

The man walked into Co-operative Food, in Stamford Road, with a Balaclava around his face at 7.15am yesterday.

He pulled the weapon on three workers and told them to empty two tills worth of cash into a sports bag.

He then left the shop and turned left towards the town centre with the money in hand.

The store was then closed and police were called before it re-opened at about 10am.

No-one from the shop would speak to the Evening Telegraph, but a spokesman for the firm said: “We can confirm that an armed robbery took place this morning at our Stamford Road food store in Kettering.

“The members of staff involved are badly shaken but otherwise unhurt and we are doing everything we can to support them.

“We are now working closely with the police to help them with their investigations.”

Police are now scouring CCTV images of the man and are appealing to speak to a woman who walked in the shop just minutes before the incident.

Detective Sergeant Kate Anderson from the force’s serious crime team said: “We are confident that we will catch this man.

“We are treating this very much as an isolated incident, it is difficult to judge what that the motivation might have been.

“We want the public to be resassured we are investigating this robustly.

“Although no-one was hurt, we are treating this as a very serious incident.”

The man is described as 5ft 10in and wore a black coat, light grey tracksuit bottoms and grey trainers.

He was carrying a JD Sports bag and a white plastic bag.

The woman police want to speak to is described as white and aged about 30.

She wore a black jacket and had short, dark hair with a spikey fringe.

The armed robbery comes four months after another Co-op store a mile away was targeted.

Two masked men entered the store in Grange Place on October 18 and used an axe to threaten staff before taking away hundreds of pounds from a safe.

Donna Wilnshurst is manager of Age UK Northamptonshire, a shop neighbouring the Stamford Road Co-op.

She said: “The robberies are a sign of the times – people are getting poorer and more desperate for money.”

Anyone with information can call police on 101.