The terrifying moment a masked robber demands cash at an Amble store

The attempted robbery caught on cctv.
The attempted robbery caught on cctv.

This is the heart-stopping moment when a masked would-be robber confronted a shop assistant in her 60s and demanded cash in Amble yesterday morning.

The man, who was dressed in a bizarre fashion, marched into the Queen Street Convenience Store just before 6.30am and confronted the worker at the counter. He shoved a plastic carrier bag in front of her and ordered her to fill it with money.

A close-up of the would-be robber

A close-up of the would-be robber

But he encountered more than he had bargained for. The brave member of staff, who did not want to be named, refused to hand anything over, so he walked round to the back of the counter and attempted to help himself.

She grappled with him and called for help from a delivery driver who was in the back room. The would-be robber then ran off and headed towards the Braid, behind Queen Street.

He was wearing a balaclava with holes cut for his eyes and mouth, gloves, a ladies bolero-style grey jacket, jogging bottoms and trainers.

The shocking episode was caught on the store's cctv and store owner Kevin Rutherford, 32, posted images from it on his Facebook page with the message: 'Does anyone recognise this low life scumbag who thought he would try and rob us this morning?'

It has already reached more than 50,000 people.

Mr Rutherford praised his employee's actions. He said: "She did really well, over and above the call of duty. He manhandled her and she was shaken - but she is back at work today. She has worked in retail all her life so she is experienced."

He said the attacker appeared to be more of a speculative robber than a seasoned criminal - he was not loud and did not have a commanding voice, and was probably in his 20s. But it was planned as he seemed to know the layout of the shop and which of the two tills to approach.

"His outfit was quite distinctive - he may have bought it at a local charity shop," said Mr Rutherford, who added this was the first time in the eight years he has owned the shop that anything like this has happened.

Northumbria Police officers conducted a search of the area but found no trace of the suspect. If anyone can help with the investigation, contact the police on 101, quoting the reference number 280 and the date 25/2/17, or anonymously, using the Crimestoppers number 0800 555111.