The owner of a liquor store in Huntly is blaming "synthetics (drugs) 100 per cent" for the actions of a violent group of youths that attempted to rob his store before stealing his cousin's vehicle and fleeing the scene.
CCTV footage captured the moment a gang of seven youths rushed toward the owner, his visiting cousin and two staff members on Friday night as they were closing the store in the Waikato town.
The video shows the youths running into shot and facing off with the liquor store owner and the others before the innocent parties back off and retreat to the safety of a vehicle.
"They timed it to perfection but failed because I decided to close the store five minutes earlier."
"I got the worst scare of my life," the owner who wishes to remain anonymous told the NZ Herald.
"No one got hurt luckily but they stole my cousin's car and damaged my ute by kicking it in badly."
The store owner went on to tell the NZ Herald he was "100 per cent" sure that synthetics were to blame for the attempted robbery.
Police are investigating the incident.