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Pub-goers help detain two suspected robbers
Monday 31st December, 2012

Customers at a pub helped detain two suspected armed robbers who targeted a convenience store in Wigan.

At about 9.25pm on Sunday 30 December 2012, three masked men went into the Co-Op on Pole Street, Standish, and demanded cash from the staff who were working.

No weapons were seen.

While the men were threatening the shop workers, another employee ran across the road to the pub opposite to raise the alarm and for someone to call the police.

As this was happening, the offenders were emptying the contents of the till and a large quantity of cigarettes into a bag, but were disturbed when a number of customers from the pub burst in and detained two of the suspects.

The third offender managed to kick open the secure stock room door and made his escape via the fire door.

Police arrived and two men were arrested on suspicion of robbery, and remain in custody for questioning.

The outstanding offender is described as being black or Asian, about 5ft 9in to 5ft 10in tall, of a medium to heavy build and spoke with a Liverpudlian accent. He was wearing black balaclavas, gloves and carrying a black bin bag.

Police are now appealing to anyone with information to come forward.

Detective Inspector Martin Reddington said: "The customers in the pub showed incredible bravery to confront these robbers in the act, with no thought for their own safety or well-being.

"As a result, we have been able to detain two suspects and we are currently questioning those men about the robbery. I would like to thank everyone who came to the shopworkers aid. This display of community spirit has undoubtedly given our officers an excellent start to this investigation which hopefully will result in the conviction of all those involved.

"We now need to trace the third man and also build up a picture of the exact movements of these men prior to the robbery.

"I would appeal to anyone who witnessed three men hanging around the area acting suspiciously or perhaps carrying out reconnaissance on the store to call us and help us catch the outstanding offender."

Anyone with information should call Wigan CID on 0161 856 7295 or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

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