Armed robbers force boss to hand over cash

ARMED men stole a large amount of cash from a Morpeth garage after threatening its manager.

David Evans was the only employee at the HiQ tyres and vehicle maintenance centre in the Coopies Lane Industrial Estate last Thursday evening when two men came to the front door.

Following a brief exchange, one of the robbers burst in and brandished a baseball bat while the other stood near the door with a metal bar.

The terrified father-of-two was forced to hand over hundreds of pounds taken on the day and the men took off in a van.

Describing what happened during the incident, which took place just before 6pm, Mr Evans said: “One of the men popped his head through the door and asked if we were still open.

“I said that we were but I was the only one on site and I wouldn’t be able to do anything with his car.

“Then he burst in and shouted that he wanted the day’s takings as well as swinging the baseball bat towards me.

“I opened the cash register and explained that there was only change in the till, but he said he wanted more and forced me to go out the back and take out the money in the safe.

“It is company policy not to resist in a situation like this, so I handed the cash to him.”

He added: “I have never dealt with this before in my life and I was extremely shaken up afterwards. When the door opens now I’m a bit flinchy.

“Hopefully, the police will catch the men as I don’t want anyone else to go through what I did.”

Police have issued descriptions of the two men they are seeking.

The first is described as a white man, aged from 30 to 35, around 6ft tall with a slim build.

He had a distinctive pointed chin and short blond, possibly bleached, hair and stubble on his face. He was wearing a white, ‘dirty’ hooded top and blue mid-wash jeans.

The second man is also white, aged between 30 and 35, around 5ft 10ins tall and of a stocky build with a chubby face. He had short dark hair, cropped at the sides, and he was wearing a green, lumberjack-type jacket.

The robbers left the garage in a dark blue Ford Transit van with steel wheels and a partial registration of NX 02.

Any witnesses or anyone with information about the offence is asked to contact Northumbria Police on 101, extension 69191, or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.