The smash and grab took place today at 2.30pm at Tj Handcrafted in Botany. Video / Brooke Lamb
Armed smash and grab robbers have targeted two Auckland stores today, leaving shocked customers and staff terrified, and making off with jewellery and a phone.
Two men robbed a Botany store with hammers this afternoon, while up to a dozen “scumbags” – some armed with large hammers, crowbars and sticks – left empty handed after targeting a Michael Hill Jewelers store at Lynn Mall this evening.
In the first incident, two men entered TJ handcrafted jewellery store on Chapel St at 2.30pm.
They used hammers to smash the counters, making off with jewellery in violet and brazen attack.
An eyewitness told the Herald the loud banging sound caused shoppers to run frantically in fear. She hid in the salon next door before entering the store to investigate after the robbers fled.
She took a video for evidence, showing the damage.
“Glass was everywhere, I tried to comfort the worker who was so scared,” the witness said.
The robbers also took a worker’s phone along with the stolen jewellery.
In a statement, police said enquires were ongoing to locate the offenders.
In a second incident across town, shoppers were also left terrified after up to a dozen people attempted to break into the Michael Hill store at Lynn Mall in New Lynn.
About 6pm, the offenders approached the metal security door and attempted to gain entry while workers hid inside, a witness told the Herald.
They said the perpetrators looked like “young scumbags” and were armed with large hammers, crowbars and sticks.
“It was quite a shock that this kind of thing could happen five metres from where I was sitting.”
The group ran off after realising they could not gain entry.
Police said enquiries into the attempted robbery were ongoing.
It has not been confirmed if these events are linked.
Tonight’s incidents are the latest in a spate of smash and grab robberies around Auckland in recent months.
This is also the second time a Michael Hill store has been targeted this week.
Michael Hill New Market was robbed last Wednesday in an equally brazen attack where thieves used hammers to smash the store’s counters.