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Police hunt for armed man after failed robbery

A full-scale search was launched in Southampton last night for an armed man dressed in dark clothing, following an attempted robbery at the Wok Express on Middle Road.

Police media manager Dwayne Caines confirmed that a would-be thief demanded cash from a store employee just after 5.30pm.

He escaped on foot when the woman’s screams alerted others nearby. The culprit escaped on foot after “a brief verbal exchange”.

“A man who was brandishing what appeared to be a firearm came to the counter of the Wok Express and made demands for money,” said Mr Caines last night.

“The man left without getting anything in the store, no one was injured and police are now looking for that individual in the area. We’re told that he was wearing all dark clothing, a tall, skinny man in dark clothing.”

He added: “There is certain information that we want to keep close to our chest at this point in time.”

Right next door is the Hands of Love Ministry outlet, where founder Fern Wade said she ran out to see what was happening when she heard the screams.

Said Ms Wade: “It hasn’t shaken me up but what we have to understand is we’re living in days of turmoil, violence. And people have, number one, no fear of God and no fear of people.

“We’re dealing with individuals that don’t have any conscience. If the owner of the Wok didn’t scream I would not have known what was going on; I rushed to the door.

“I think we’re living in the age that you should be aware when people are screaming, or whatever, there’s no need to mind our own business anymore.”

When asked if she feared for her own safety, Ms Wade replied: “No I didn’t, I don’t fear.

“I have perfect confidence in God that he’s going to look after me and I know where I’m going.”

But she conceded that she believes it’s a sad state of affairs in Bermuda today and she said the Country’s leaders had an opportunity to help the country in the 1990s and they didn’t.

The bottom line she said: “It’s all about drugs, and money, and power.” And looking forward she said she does not see “things getting much better”.

“Power and authority are two different things,” said Ms Wade.

“What people have to understand, power belongs to God and if you’re looking for authority in whatever you’re doing it comes with responsibility. We as a people, we are letting go and it’s time for us to get serious on crime and everything else in Bermuda.”

Asked if she believed a cashier’s job in Bermuda may soon cost that individual their life, Ms Wade shook her head.

“Just being an owner of any business in Bermuda you have to be very, very careful,” she said.

“It has to be more than security and cameras now because we’re dealing with a very ruthless group of young men, very ruthless — like I said earlier, having no fear of anyone and that’s what we’re dealing with.

“And we in Bermuda we’re small, we can do something about it. We have to start looking out for one another and that’s the whole thing.”

Meanwhile, Police are appealing for anyone who may have seen anything suspicious in the area of the Wok Express around the time of the incident to contact the Western CIU.

Said a spokesman: “Following the incident, the offender made good his escape on foot through the rear of the property heading toward Riviera Road.

“Detectives are interested in speaking with potential witnesses, in particular members of the public who may have been in the Riviera Road, Southampton area around 5.30pm Wednesday and saw anything suspicious.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Sergeant Derricka Burns on 234-1010 or the confidential Crime Stoppers Hotline on 800-8477.

Attempted robbery: Police were last night hunting for an armed gunman who attempted to hold up Wok Express in Southampton (Photo by Akil Simmons)

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Published February 21, 2013 at 12:02 pm (Updated February 21, 2013 at 12:01 pm)

Police hunt for armed man after failed robbery

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