Samurai sword attack horror sparks demand for tougher laws
The owner of a shop where a man was slashed with a samurai sword during a botched robbery has called for tougher laws to tackle knife crime.
Londonderry businessman Terry White, owner of the News and Views newsagents on Westland Street in the Bogside, spoke out as he released CCTV images of the incident.
University student and part-time worker at the shop Gary Glackin (24) had been locking up along with a friend at around 2am on Monday when a hooded man dressed in a tracksuit and carrying a long blade appeared.
The sword-wielding robber, who had his face covered, demanded money before attacking the till counter with the weapon.
On being refused cash he swung the sword at Mr Glackin and began to ransack the shop.
Mr Glackin managed to flee into a small room while his friend was able to get outside and hold the front door shut to trap the armed maniac.
A short time later Mr Glackin inched open the door to shout at the robber.
Startled, the man made for the front door and after tugging it open slightly, started swiping the sword through the gap at Mr Glackin’s friend who was holding it closed.
This time, however, he wounded the man, slicing him in the hand, before fleeing towards Gartan Square.
The 22-year-old had to be rushed to the Ulster Hospital in Dundonald to undergo surgery and has been told he may have permanent nerve damage.
Mr White, whose shop was also targeted by robbers armed with guns two-and-a-half years ago, said that tougher laws and sentencing was needed for those who use deadly knives.
“This is a lethal weapon and thank God the two of them had the sense to get out of his way when they did.
“Obviously this man was injured. It could have been even worse.
“I think if there were tougher sentences or laws about knives it might keep people from carrying such weapons around on the streets,” he said.
Police have appealed for anyone with information to come forward amid fears that the culprit may strike again.