Hammer-wielding thieves snatch phones from Wythenshawe shop

Terrified staff were threatened with hammers and forced to hand over mobile phones when robbers struck at a shop in Wythenshawe at the weekend.

Three men on push bikes approached the CeX store on The Birtles just after 10am on 22 September 2013 store and one of the offenders went inside brandishing a hammer. The other two men, who also had hammers, then burst into the store and jumped over the counter.

After stuffing numerous mobile phones and other electrical goods into a bag, the staff were also threatened and forced to surrender the money from the till.

The three men then left the store and fled towards Wythenshawe Market on their bikes, which were later abandoned when it is believed they got into a black car and escaped.

Police are now appealing to anyone with information to come forward.

The first man is described as white, about 5ft 9in tall, of a medium build and wearing black clothing which also covered his face and mouth. The second offender was slightly taller, between 5ft 11in tall and 6ft tall, and of a slimmer build but wearing similar clothing, and the third man was wearing a dark grey Adidas tracksuit.

Detective Inspector Ian Cottrell said: “Thankfully the staff were not injured during this robbery, but understandably they were extremely distressed to be confronted by three men wielding hammers and had no idea whether or not they were about to be attacked.

“We need to catch these men so I am making a direct appeal to people in the community to help us find them.

“It is probable they will seek to offload the stolen goods as soon as possible to make a quick sale and line their pockets, so I would urge people to be on the lookout for anyone selling cheap mobile phones without being able to provide previous proof of ownership.

“If you see someone trying to do this, or are offered a phone on the cheap, please contact the police as you could be crucial to helping us catch these dangerous offenders.”

Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101 or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

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