Robbery sparks crime fear in West St area

Councillor Darryn Causby.
Councillor Darryn Causby.

The police and the Craigavon Policing and Community Safety Partnership have been urged to study a recent spate of crime in the West Street area of Portadown.

Councillor Darryn Causby has called for action after an armed robbery of a small store on Sunday and a burglary of a house on Monday.

A man who spoke with a foreign accent entered a store at the junction of West Street and Atkinson Avenue on Sunday at around 5.30pm. The man brandished a knife, demanded money and put his hand in the till and stole a sum of money. He then made off on foot.

The male is described as being tall, of slim build and wearing a light grey hoodie and faded black scarf. No one was injured.

The burglary occurred on Monday night at Greenview Gardens at the Edgarstown end of West Street, where entry was gained via a bathroom window. Both incidents are being investigated by police.

Mr Causby said that following these incidents, and a number of assaults, the PSNI should step up its presence.

“The trend is extremely worrying, and I have asked the PSNI to present the latest figures, and to take appropriate action in co-operation with the community,” he said.

“Things came to a head at the start of the week with a robbery at a small store in Atkinson Avenue. A member of staff was threatened at knife point and the till was rifled. It just had a small amount of money – around £20 – but the member of staff was terrified. The man wore a grey hood and spoke with a foreign accent.”

He added that this followed a recent attempt by a man to sell knives at another nearby shop, “and this is a very worrying trend”.

“All this, allied to a recent knife attack in West Street, when Simon Johnston was seriously injured, has people worried sick,” Mr Causby added. “Urgent action is needed.”

Anyone who noticed any suspicious activity or who has any information about Sunday’s robbery should contact police at Lurgan on 0845 600 8000. You can also contact Crimestoppers anonymously.