Cops hunt masked ram-raiding trio

Checkleys store
Checkleys store
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A shopkeeper had a lucky escape after burglars ram-raided his Ilkeston store while he was inside.

But, not only did the hapless trio escape with just an empty cashbox, they had to abandon their stolen car as they were unable to drive off after the raid at Checkley’s on Friday night (October 25).

John Checkley, who was behind the counter when the Ford Mondeo was reversed into the shutters, was left shaken but unhurt.

“You can’t print what I think about these people,” he said.

The masked burglars struck at about 9.10pm just after the store in Little Hallam Lane had closed.

“When you’re not expecting something like that you’re not quite sure what’s going on,” Mr Checkley explained.

“The first thing I noticed was all the glass on the floor because the door was shattered.”

Two of the burglars then got out of the car and kicked the door open and burst inside shouting at Mr Checkley, 65.

“That was very unpleasant,” he said.

One of the men snatched a box from the shop and both got back in the car where the third man was waiting.

When the car failed to start, they fled on foot along the alley alongside the store, which leads to Catherine Avenue.

“It all happened so quickly,” said Mr Checkley, who has handed CCTV images to the police. “But I’m confident the police will find them.

“Our customers have been very supportive,” he added.

Police are appealing for anyone who may have seen the grey car, which had been stolen in Shaw Lane, Holbrook, on October 19 and had false plates.

They are also asking whether anyone may have seen the men flee the shop.

The cash box, which is grey, about a foot long and four inches deep may have been dumped nearby.

Call police on 101.