Dairy is a favourite target for robbers

LAUREN HAYES
Last updated 05:00 17/12/2013

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Police are appealing for information after an aggravated robbery at the Crinan St Dairy in Invercargill.

A man, described by police as Caucasian and of slight build, entered the store just before 8pm on Sunday, demanding money from a female employee before brandishing a knife.

He left the dairy with an undisclosed amount of cash.

Detective Mason Middlemass, of Invercargill, said the man was wearing an orange camouflage balaclava with black wrap-around sunglasses, a plain black leather-type jacket and blue jeans.

Police would not disclose any further details yesterday but encouraged anyone who had seen a person matching the description or acting suspiciously in the Crinan St area around the time of the robbery to get in touch, or to contact Crime Stoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Crinan St dairy owner Murray Baird, who also owns Rugby Park Food Centre, yesterday declined to comment.

The latest incident is at least the ninth aggravated or attempted robbery at the Crinan St store in the past decade, with offenders using guns, knives and softball bats to make off with cash and cigarettes.

Since 2008, seven Invercargill businesses have been targeted in 13 aggravated robberies.

Earlier this year, a man armed with a machete robbed the Southern Service Station on Elles Rd, fleeing with cash and cigarettes, a month after a knife-wielding man robbed Southland SuperLiquor.

TIMELINE OF CRIME

December 2013: A man in a balaclava armed with a knife makes off with cash. December 2009: A 14-year-old seeking cigarettes, reportedly armed with a hammer, robs the dairy. May 2009: A knife-wielding man demands money but leaves after being spooked by a screaming shop assistant.

November 2008: A teenager with a gun holds up the store, scarpering with $200. October 2007: A man demanding cash threatens a shop assistant, stating he has a knife. November 2006: An 18-year-old with a knife attempts to rob the dairy.

October 2005: Three teenagers armed with a knife threaten an employee before making off with eight packets of tobacco and about $400.

June 2004: Two masked people with softball bats try to rob the dairy as an employee is closing up but cannot get in a locked door. May 2003: A man wearing a balaclava rips out the dairy's till and flees. 

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