Belfast Telegraph

Brave shop assistant forgives woman who pulled knife on her

By Kate Buck

A shop assistant has said she forgives a woman who pulled a knife on her after she tried to shoplift from her store.

Danielle Matthews (33) was working in Dandelion Lane interiors in Portadown on Wednesday when she confronted a woman who was attempting to steal from the store.

The alleged thief then pulled a knife on Danielle and a customer, who was also in the store at the time. But far from being angry at her attacker, Danielle says that she would not want to speak badly of her because she believes she needs help.

She said: "Life has to go on when these things happen. I forgive her.

"I wouldn't want anything bad to be said about her, especially if she has young children."

A 40-year-old woman was arrested on charges of theft, possession of an offensive weapon and common assault.

CCTV footage was shared in an attempt to catch the offender.

It showed Danielle confront the shoplifter as she was attempting to leave the store and struggle with her and another customer.

When Danielle tries to restrain the shoplifter it caused the assailant to try and force her way out of the front door.

In the footage, Danielle is then grabbed by her scarf and pulled out of view of the camera while the customer is on the phone to police.

When the struggling pair come back into view, the knife is pulled, forcing Danielle and the customer to retreat while the thief slips out the front door onto Church Street.

No-one was injured but the owner of the store said that both Danielle and the customer were "badly shook up" by the ordeal.

Police have appealed for anyone who witnessed the incident or has relevant information to contact detectives on 101 quote ref: 492 date: 11/10/17.

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