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Armed raid at corner shop

PUBLISHED: 10:25 21 April 2008 | UPDATED: 20:12 05 July 2010

A shopkeeper told last night how he thought it was a wind-up by local youngsters when someone came in with a mask covering his face and proceeded to point a gun at him and shout "give me your money".

A shopkeeper told last night how he thought it was a wind-up by local youngsters when someone came in with a mask covering his face and proceeded to point a gun at him and shout “give me your money”.

In fact, George Gillett, 59, said he and his wife Mavis were so con-vinced it was a prank that they quite calmly refused to hand over £250 from the till of their Lowestoft shop.

“He ran out after that and it was only when no one came back in laughing that the truth dawned that we had actually been in an armed hold-up,” said Mr Gillett.

“We know the young people round here and thought it was a joke. Now we know what really happened we have been left a bit shaken up.”

The couple, who have run the G and M Corner Shop, in Waveney Crescent, for nine years, were preparing to close at 8.50pm on Saturday when the raider burst in.

Mr Gillett said: “I was standing at the side of the counter and I think he may have only seen my wife to begin with. His face was covered, apart from his eyes, with a cream-coloured mask. He said to my wife, 'Give us the money', and was waving a silver handgun which I think had a blue handle.”

He said there was only around £250 in the till because the couple had cashed up the bulk of their takings at about 7pm.

After fleeing the shop empty-handed, it is thought the raider ran down an alley in the direction of Kimberley Road.

Mr Gillett said it later emerged that a neighbour and her young child had seen the man in the alley beforehand.

He said: “The child thought he was urinating but he was probably bending down to put his mask on.”

It was the first time they had faced an armed robber in the shop but it now made them wonder if it was worth staying opening after 6pm.

Police have issued a description of the raider as a white man, about 5ft 11in, of slim to medium build with short brown hair and a local accent. He was wearing blue jeans and a black hooded anorak.

Witnesses are asked to call Suffolk police on 01473 613500 and ask for the investigating officer Det Con Jonathan Loud.

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