Red Beach Four Square owners Jeff and Coral Fenton. The ram raid was a shock for the couple, but the community support that came afterwards was heartwarming.
The Four Square supermarket in Red Beach was the latest target of ram raiders, who drove into the store, setting off the alarms at 4am on Easter Monday.
As well as damage to the doorframe, the impact pushed the counters back into the shop and it is estimated around $3000-worth of stock was damaged, including broken wine bottles.
Owners Jeff and Coral Fenton say Police were quickly on the scene, to find the car used as a ram still there.
“They stole two cars and used one as a getaway,” Jeff says.
There are CCTV cameras in the store.
Jeff says the couple just marked nine years of owning the Four Square, on April 1, and this is the first time they’ve had anything like this happen.
He says judging from damage to the cigarette cabinet, cigarettes were the main target. However, the thieves failed to get it open and no money is kept in the store. Some cigars and a little alcohol were taken and they also made off with a quantity of rubbish bags.
Jeff says at $12 for five bags, these have become a target for theft in recent years, which is why they are now kept at the front of most supermarkets, where they can be seen from the checkout.
A big cleanup was required, and Jeff and Coral are immensely grateful to the many members of the public, and staff who were on leave but came in specially to help.
Family members also helped and the store was open again by 12 noon.
It’s the second ram raid on the Coast in recent weeks – The Goldsmith in Millwater was targeted on March 23 (HM April 1).
Mark Fergus, Waitemata North Area Commander, says Police are investigating both incidents.
“While enquiries are ongoing into both incidents, there is no indication at this stage to suggest they are linked,” he says.
“Police treat these matters seriously and we also want to advise store owners that there are steps they can take to help deter opportunistic offenders. These include having no money or valuables on site and cigarettes secured in a locked safe, with signage to make this clear. CCTV cameras and other security measures such as bollards, burglar bars or gates will also help prevent this type of offending.”
Anyone with information about either of these incidents is asked to contact Police on 105, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.