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Customers express shock and disgust at ram raid attempt to steal in-store ATM in County Antrim

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CUSTOMERS at a County Antrim shop hit by a ram raid attack where an attempt was made to steal an in-store ATM machine have spoken of their anger.

Local people told of their disgust at the attack at the Largy Road Filling Station which is around four miles outside Ahoghill on the main road between Portglenone and Randalstown.

The ram-raid happened around 2am on Friday and police are appealing for information.

PSNI Detective Sergeant Lenaghan said: “Shortly after 2:05am, it was reported that a car believed to be a dark coloured Vauxhall Vectra arrived at a garage forecourt in the area.

“The vehicle then reversed, ramming the outside shutters of the premises a number of times. A male then got out of the car and attempted to break into the ATM on site. The male made off in the vehicle from the scene empty handed. Damage was reported to the shutters following the incident.”

At the scene on Friday morning the shop owner did not wish to speak about the incident.

Local people said more than a dozen people work in the filling station which also has a Mace shop.

A number of workers at offices and businesses beside the shop were also unable to get to work on Friday morning whilst police had the area taped off to conduct their enquiries.

One man at the scene said: “This is a big shock and there is a lot of anger that these type of raids are continuing. This seems to be a different approach from using diggers as there is not a hole-in-the-wall cash machine here but it is in-store.”

Another man at the scene on Friday morning said: “It is a busy shop. I go into it every day and around now I would normally be in getting something to eat. What has happened is not good for the community, everybody uses it, it is busy steady”.

A PSNI spokesperson added: “Enquiries are continuing and we would appeal to anyone who witnessed any suspicious vehicles in the area between 2:05am and 2:25am on Friday 21st February to contact detectives on 101, quoting reference number 118 21/02/20. Alternatively, information can also be provided to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 which is 100% anonymous and gives people the power to speak up and stop crime.”

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