Having a cop shop as a neighbour has not protected a Goodwoodshopkeeper from crime – his business has been hit three times in just over a year, the last time on Monday October 31.
Three men, one with a gun, entered Select Super Shop, on the corner of Wiener Street and Voortrekker Road, just after 2pm, and held up a lone shop assistant, said police spokesman Captain Waynne Theunis.
Police are investigating the armed robbery. The store’s owner, Ahmed Abdulah Adan, said it was the third time his business had been hit. He was not there during the latest robbery.
He said he had moved from neighbouring Elsies River, thinking Goodwood would be safer.
Mr Adan said the robbers had taken mostly chocolates and change, costing him about R5 000, and fled in a silver Polo with false number plates.
“One day there is going to be justice,” he said in between helping customers.
In a five-minute security camera video widely circulated on Facebook, the men can be seen entering the store while a customer stands at the counter.
Later, his two accomplices can be seen, one pushing the customer to the side. While this customer appears to make a getaway, other patrons walk in while the shop assistant and another customer are forced to the ground and, later, to the back of the cramped store.
At one point, one of the robbers, who had been packing a big, striped bag with cigarettes and change from a drawer, serves a young man buying cigarettes.
A boy, unaware of the drama he had walked in on, scratches in a box, for what looks like a packet of chips.
A woman, who is pushed around by a robber as she enters, forces her way out of the shop.
As the robbers flee, the young boy puts his hands above his head and also runs out, followed by two women who had sought refuge at the back of the store when they had walked in on the robbery.
The shop assistant, dressed in an orange T-shirt, hastily appears from the back of the store, shuts the security gate as he leaves, possibly for the police station a few metres away.
On Facebook, users commented about how brazen the trio had been to target a shop on the police station’s doorstep: “En dit so naby die polisiestasie. Verwaande, gevoellose diewe,” one entry reads.
Another Facebook user referred to another incident, possibly the robbery at 4U Superette days earlier. “Two robberies in less than two weeks in such close proximity. We must keep praying for the safety of our loved ones, especially our children and the elderly,” the woman said.
While another said: “These guys are not afraid of anything. 100 metres from Goodwood police station.”
Mr Adan believes one of the men had been involved in all three robberies at his store, the first on September 28 last year; then on Thursday September 22 and the third last week.
On Monday October 24, 4U Superette in Milton Road, Goodwood, was also robbed.
Captain Theunis said that both cases had involved three to four robbers and the use of at least one gun.
“In both incidents, the suspects fled in a silver or black VW Polo,” he said.
Goodwood police plan to be more visible during the festive season and hold joint operations and roadblocks. They have also urged business owners to upgrade their security.