A Inverin shop manager was left ‘traumatised’ but uninjured following a terrifying ordeal in which he was kidnapped at gunpoint, forced to open the safe of the shop, and left tied up as the culprit fled.
No arrests had been made at the time this paper went to press but gardai have confirmed the investigation is on-going with CCTV footage and other evidence being examined. Between 11.45pm on July 30 and 12.15am on July 31 the manager of Siopa An Phobail in Inverin, County Galway, had emerged from the Poitin Stil pub and was approached in the car park by a lone man.
A spokesperson for Galway Garda Station told the Advertiser that the shop manager was then “forced to drive back to the shop by this man - who is reported to have been in possession of a firearm - and open the safe. A quantity of cash was taken from the safe. The shop manager was then tied up, with duct tape, to a chair and left in the staff toilets.”
The burglar then fled the scene by driving away in the manager’s car, a black Toyota Starlet 94 D registration. After spending almost two hours tied up the manager freed himself and raised the alarm. Gardai conducted a search of the area and the black Toyota Starlet was discovered at Bohoona in Spiddal, about 4km from the crime scene, before 4am. The scene was also sealed off for technical examination.
An incident room has been set up and gardai are continuing their efforts to catch the man responsible for this aggravated burglary. The suspect is described as being 5’11” in height, of stocky build and wearing a black balaclava and black clothing.
Gardai are appealing for witnesses who may have noticed anything unusual or suspicious around the car park at the Poitin Still, at Siopa An Phobail, or the movements of the black Toyota Starlet around the time of the incident to contact Salthill Garda Station on 091- 514720, Galway Garda Station on 091-538000, or the Garda Confidential Telephone Line 1800 666 111