Canterbury tavern owner fears his business was 'cased' before armed robbery
The owner of a Canterbury tavern robbed by crowbar-wielding thieves thinks it was "cased" before it was hit.
Golden Mile Tavern in Templeton, west of Christchurch, was robbed about 2am on Saturday, just as staff were putting money in the safe.
Staff were threatened and an unknown amount of cash was taken. No-one was injured and only staff were in the building at the time.
Owner Murray, who did not want his surname used, said he thought the two men responsible had been to the motel and tavern before.
"From footage we've got, you can see them walking around outside the place and they've waited until everyone has left."
The fact his dog Bruce, who can be seen in the CCTV footage, did not react to the intruders also pointed towards them being known to the business.
"He had a bit of a go at them in the hallway, and then it's like they know him, so that's the line we're going down at the moment."
Staff were putting the last of the week's take in the office's safe when the two men came in, Murray said.
He said it seemed the robbers knew what time of night the safe would be open.
"How would they feel if I'd done that in their home? I treat the business as my home."
Security at the business was good, Murray said, but he planned to make changes to try ensure there would not be any more burglaries.
As for the motel's guard dog, he said Bruce had "been sacked".
Police acting Detective Sergeant Matt Reynolds said one of the men used a crowbar to threaten staff before fleeing with cash.
"Good CCTV footage from the tavern shows the offenders during the robbery and police are following positive lines of inquiry to identify both," he said.
Anyone who recognised the men or had information about the robbery was asked to call Christchurch police on (03) 363 7400.
Information could also be provided anonymously by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.