Wednesday, 3 December 2008 - 3:26pm |

Wainuiomata TAB punters surprised by robbery

1 min read

The Wainuiomata TAB was robbed at knifepoint late this morning while most punters present were unaware of what was taking place.

Detective Fleur de Bes, Lower Hutt CIB, said a very cool and collected masked offender strode purposely into the TAB in The Strand at 11.10am today, threatened a staff member with a knife and left with less than $300.

The offender, described as Maori and tall, wore a plain grey hooded sweatshirt, a black balaclava, dark track paints with white trim, white trainers and white gardening gloves or similar.

He fled the TAB and was last seen turning left into the direction of Wainuiomata Road. Where he went then is not known. It's possible he may have gone into nearby parks.

"Several TAB patrons were inside the premises while the robbery took place," Detective de Bes said. "Most didn't realise the robbery was happening until it was all over as they were organising their bets and watching tv screens."

She praised TAB staff for remaining calm and complying with the robber's demands.

Police hope security camera footage will help identify the offender.

If you know who he is, have some information about the robbery, or you were in The Strand area and saw some suspicious activity, please call Lower Hutt Police.