A filling station in south Armagh has been forced to temporarily close after it was targeted in a ram raid in the early hours of Tuesday morning.
Images of the incident at McKevitt Services on the Dublin Road in Killeen, appear to show that a large vehicle may have been used to ram the front shutters of the shop, causing significant damage.
Police said it was one of a number of businesses targeted in the area.
The culprits stole a number of items in the shop before fleeing the scene at around 3am. It is understood they fled across the border.
Two garages on the Forkhill Road along with an office building at Edward Street were also targeted sometime between 2am and 7:15am.
Entry was gained at each location and a number of items including vehicles, money and tobacco products were reported stolen.
Posting on Facebook, McKevitt Services Ltd wrote: “Due to a break in, our premises is temporarily closed. We aim to reopen between 12pm and 1pm today. We will update closer to the time.
“Apologies for any inconvenience caused.”
SDLP councillor Michael Savage said those who carried out the attack have “no regard” for the McKevitt family as they struggle to run their business amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
“This is a well established local family across the whole Killeen and Killeavy area, and in the greater Newry area,” he stated.
“They are known as hardworking business people, working hard to create jobs.
“These people had no regard for that, especially in the times we are living in as businesses are struggling to survive. Something like this then happens which compounds those issues.
“I contacted the family this morning to let them know that the community is with them and we fully support them.
“The problem for businesses when this happens is the wanton destruction that they have wreaked on the premises.
“This is a major repair and clean up operation for this family.”
The Newry councillor also called on anyone with any information to contact the PSNI or Gardai.
“I would appeal to anybody who has any information to report that to the PSNI on 101, and likewise anybody on the southern side of the border who may have witnessed suspicious activity in the vicinity to contact the Guards,” said Councillor Savage.
PSNI Detective Inspector Darren Handley appealed for anyone with information to come forward.
"We are at a very early stage of our investigation and I would appeal to anyone who witnessed any suspicious activity at Forkhill Road, Dublin Road or Edward Street or anyone with any information which could assist us with our enquiries to call detectives at Ardmore on 101, quoting reference 135 27/10/20, or submit a report online using our non-emergency reporting form via http://www.psni.police.uk/makeareport/," he said.
"You can also contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online at http://crimestoppers-uk.org/."