Thieves steal £17.5k in 'very professional' Newry ATM robbery
Callous thieves stole almost £17,500 after smashing open an ATM inside a shop in an elaborate heist which involved cutting electrical wires and entering the building via the roof.
It happened overnight on Thursday between 3am and 4am at Grants Costcutters in Mayobridge.
The shop is a convenience store chain offering baked, fresh and packaged goods plus alcohol sales.
The PSNI said: "The suspects have cut electric wires on the street, knocking out the lights. They have ripped out cctv. They have cut holes in the roof of the store. Once inside, they have smashed open the ATM and at this stage we believe approximately £17,500 was taken before they fled."
SDLP councillor Gillian Fitzpatrick called it a "despicable act" by thieves who were "not amateurs".
She said: "They knew the whole layout. They put a silencer-like foam over the alarm. They cut the wires and ripped out the CCTV cameras - they knew the lay of the land.
"That was very, very professionally done."
She continued: "The owners are a really good, hard-working family and they don't need or deserve this, they are so well-respected and they provide a really good service to the community.
"I would say people are in complete shock and disbelief. I don't even think anger has occurred yet. Even if they had have went through the front door and went to the front of the shop, but to actually come through the roof and the ceiling and rip stuff out - it's incredible."
She added: "It's horrible - we've had enough break-ins in people's homes in our area and community.
"But this is just another hit and people really rely on that ATM machine.
"It's a real infringement, not only that business, but on our community and it's absolutely horrific that good business people in our community have been affected in this way."
She added: "I would implore anyone who has any information to contact police and give them the details. It's a despicable act."
Officers appealed for anyone who may have driven past at the time and has a dash cam in their car to get in touch. Or to contact them with information on 101 or anonymously via 0800 555111.