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Taupō jewellery store staffer chases, tackles man accused of robbery

A staff member of a Taupō jewellery store chased a man accused of smashing a display cabinet and stealing a number of watches, and tackled him in a service lane at the rear of the premises.

Source: 1 NEWS

Detective Sergeant Andy Livingstone of Taupō CIB says police were called to the jewellery store on Tamamutu Street about 12.50pm today.

As the alleged robber fled the store, a staff member gave chase, tackling him in a service lane at the rear of the premises, Mr Livingstone said.

Another person, thought to be acting as a getaway driver, was waiting in the same service lane in a stolen blue Mazda Familia, he said. 

The driver attempted to free his co-offender by running over the staff member who was restraining him with the assistance of members of the public, Mr Livingstone said.

"Fortunately for the staff member, the man has only run over his co-offender’s foot," he said.

The driver then threatened the staff member and bystanders with a pistol before fleeing in the vehicle, Mr Livingstone said.

The car was later found empty but still running in nearby Motutere Street and has been secured for forensic examination.

A 25-year-old from Hamilton is in Police custody and is expected to face one charge of aggravated robbery in the Rotorua District Court tomorrow.

Police are appealing for information on the alleged aggravated robbery.

Anyone who may have seen the blue Mazda or the driver between 1pm and 3.30pm in the vicinity of Tamamutu Street and Motutere Street is urged to call Taupo Police on 07 378 6060.

The staff member from the jewellery store sustained minor injuries and is being supported by family and friends, Mr Livingstone said.