Armed robbers hit The Shop in WB

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Several armed robbers are being sought in connection with heists that occurred inside and outside The Shop store in West Bay on Monday night.

Royal Cayman Islands Police Service officers responded to a report that the clothing store had been robbed by four or five males around 8.30pm.

Police said the suspects first attempted to rob a cashier who had been outside the shop. Investigators said a male threatened the person with a handgun and demanded money, then focused on other people who were outside the store.

RCIPS officers said those at the store were then held at gunpoint by two other men armed with what appeared to be a shotgun and a handgun. They were robbed of their cell phones.

Simultaneously, two other males entered the shop and robbed other workers who were inside, police said. An undisclosed amount of cash and some passports were stolen. The suspects were seen leaving in a white Ford Explorer, the first licence plate numbers said to be N-132.

The vehicle was located, and shortly afterward one person was arrested.

The armed heist was the third to occur at a Grand Cayman business within the past week.

On Thursday night, the MoneyGram store in George Town was held up by a lone robber who witnesses said was armed with a handgun.

On Wednesday morning, three men robbed the Butterfield Bank branch in the Compass Centre. One of the robbers fired a shot into the ceiling.

No one was hurt in any of the incidents. Police did not state whether any of the three robberies were related.

Grand Cayman has seen a marked increase so far this year in reported robberies.

Between January and September of this year, robberies increased some 86 per cent when compared with the same nine months of last year. According to RCIPS crime statistics, there have been 54 robberies reported here through 30 September, 2010, compared to just 29 as of 30 September last year. Attempted robberies also increased.

Police are appealing for any witnesses to call West Bay CID on 949-3999 or Crime Stoppers on 800-8477

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The Shop store in West Bay.
Photo: Dennie Warren Jr.
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