Five teens, all on 24-hour curfew, arrested after robbery pursuit in Glen Eden

NZ Herald staff,
Publish Date
Mon, 5 Sep 2016, 4:39pm
Police at the scene in Glen Eden. Photo / Renee Wells
Police at the scene in Glen Eden. Photo / Renee Wells

Five teens, all on 24-hour curfew, arrested after robbery pursuit in Glen Eden

NZ Herald staff,
Publish Date
Mon, 5 Sep 2016, 4:39pm

UPDATED 8.24pm Five people have been arrested after a car pursuit across Auckland and then a foot chase by police officers.

The offenders ran into an family-run electronics shop on Sunnybrae Rd in Hillcrest where three people were working. One was armed with an axe and the others had metal bars.

The staff were threatened with the swinging axe and the metal bars, and the axe was smashed into the desk in front of one of the workers. Glass display cabinets were smashed and electrical items were stolen.

An employee was shoved to the ground and kicked and punched about the head and face. He will be seen by medical staff but is not believed to be seriously injured.

Inspector Kerry Watson said the offenders continued through the store stealing brand new mobile phones before jumping in their car to make a getaway with the sixth offender.

A witness provided police with the registration of the vehicle and this was broadcast immediately to all police units.

The vehicle was stolen.

A short time later a patrol car saw the car heading towards west Auckland.

The officer followed the car at a distance and at Westgate, police signalled for the driver to stop, which the driver ignored. This started a police pursuit.

Over the next fifteen minutes, multiple olice units were involved and the vehicle continued to flee. Officers laid road spikes as the vehicle headed for Glen Eden.

The car was successfully spiked and the offenders dumped it at the Glen Eden shops close to a childcare centre and ran.

The majority headed for the train station but were chased by Police on foot. 

Police captured one off the alleged offenders immediately, two were seen hiding under a deck by the Eagle helicopter and the public helped catch the other two. One offender is still outstanding but police are confident they will identify him quickly

Watson said the boys, who are all under 16 and "very well known" to police, will probably face charges of aggravated robbery and dangerous driving.

"It's very fortunate that no one was injured at the scene of the crime and if the result of the extreme dangerous driving."

The teenagers are all on a 24-hour curfew. They had been at a course that day but not returned home afterwards.

Manager of Servisal Equipment Chris Howard saw the whole event unfold. He said the young men jumped out of a car with electronics, fast food wrappers and an axe after the car stopped on a one-way road.

"I saw a group of young fellas in a white Subaru station wagon with four flat tyres. So it must have been spiked. They came down to the mall in Glen Eden and the police chased them up the road. They all jumped out, bailed out of the car with heaps of junk like fast food wrappers.

"[Police] found cellphones, a bag full of goodies [electronics] and an axe, a little tomahawk. Maybe they were doing some robberies this afternoon."

Mr Howard said the boys ran up the walkway onto the main road. One stayed on the road and was caught while the other three fled up a railway corridor into the back gardens of residents. Howard said their abandoned car brought traffic to a stand still.

"It's been a quiet day, we needed a bit of excitement."

Inspector Watson said the electronic store staff were very shaken.

"People have gone in there in an appalling manner. It would have been a harrowing experience for them."

One woman told the Herald she was in her car outside the shops in Glen Eden when she saw a policeman "running around with a hand gun".

The woman, who did not want to be named, said there were about eight or nine police cars involved and also a helicopter circling above the shops.

She left the area and drove down West Coast Rd where she saw more police cars.

Another woman, who works in one of the shops, said she saw a car being chased by police.

It crashed near a childcare centre.

People have been saying on the Glen Eden Facebook page that a white car was stolen from Angels Daycare and was spiked by police.

A large number of police units, including dog section and the Eagle helicopter are continuing to search around the Glen Eden Railway Station area.

Some cordons are in place in this immediate area.

The alleged offenders are appearing in North Shore District Court tomorrow.