Armed robber's daring raid
A MAN armed with a firearm yesterday threatened staff and customers at the Southern Cross Credit Union in Casino, escaping on foot with an undisclosed amount of money.
The hooded bandit entered the credit union in Canterbury Street about 9.30am and menaced three staff members and three customers with a firearm he produced on entering the building.
He fled a short time later with the cash, racing from the building in the direction of Walker Street.
Det Sgt Stephen Clark of Casino Police, said it was not clear where the man went from there, but it's possible he could have run north along Walker Street.
The man, described as between 157cm and 162cm tall, was wearing a dark-coloured hooded jumper and sunglasses and had a piece of material covering his mouth and nose.
Det Sgt Clark said Walker and Canterbury streets were generally busy at that hour of the morning and it was possible that a number of people saw the bandit either enter or leave the credit union.
“We're asking people who may have been in the area at the time of the robbery and who may have seen the man or have information in relation to the robbery to contact either Casino police on
6662 0099 or Crime Stoppers (on 1800 333 000),” he said.
Det Sgt Clark would not reveal the type of firearm used in the robbery yesterday nor would he comment on the likely age of the armed robber.
Police searched the area around the Casino CBD immediately after the hold-up, canvassing both business owners and members of the public.
They also stopped a number of young men wearing dark clothes and carrying backpacks. However, the thief evaded the police net.
None of the credit union staff or the customers was physically hurt in the robbery. However, they were visibly shaken by the experience.
A counsellor was called to the credit union to speak with affected staff.
One of the three customers, a Casino woman in her 40s, was comforted by two friends who were waiting for her when she was allowed to leave the credit union after speaking to police.
The woman, who did not want to be identified, was trembling as she lit a cigarette while speaking to her friends. Another customer, said he had passed the fleeing robber as he entered the branch.
It is the second time in just over two years that the branch has been robbed at gunpoint.