Shopowners in a Sunderland street have spoken of their fears after a store worker was threatened at knifepoint in an armed robbery
Police are hunting raiders who struck at the Premier Castletown Convenience Store, in Ethel Terrace, last night, and escaped with cash.
The armed robbery happened at around 8pm, with the shopworker left shaken.
It is the second serious crime in the street in little more than a fortnight, following a suspected arson attack on Forhan's Indian restaurant and takeaway which left the business badly damaged and forced people to flee their neighbouring homes.
"It makes you worried when you hear that this has happened now," said a woman who has a shop in the street.
"All of the businesses get on well and we’re trying to clean the street up but these incidents will knock us back."
One woman who has run a shop in Ethel Terrace for just two months said: "I’ve come from another area of the city to open up here and what’s gone on really worries me.
"If it was me in the shop when someone came in with a knife I’d have had a heart attack."
And another woman who owns a shop said: "It’s getting lethal on this street.
"We’ve had to get CCTV in now after the fire the other week because we can’t take any chances."
A Northumbria Police spokesperson said: "We are investigating a report of an armed robbery at the Premier shop on Ethel Terrace, Sunderland, last night (Wednesday).
"At 8.03pm, police received a report that individuals had entered the premises armed with knives and threatened an employee before making off with a quantity of cash.
"Nobody was seriously injured but the victim was left shaken by the incident.
"Enquiries are ongoing to trace those responsible. Anyone with information is asked to contact police on 101 quoting reference 1033 281118 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111."