The season of goodwill did little to halt robberies and assaults on retailers in convenience stores over the past two weeks. 

A 70-year-old retailer was shot during an attempted raid at Kays Newsagents in Watford. Early in the morning of 30 December, a lone raider burst into the store and demanded that staff open the till. The raider shot the man in the arm and fled empty-handed. The retailer was taken to taken to Watford General Hospital, where he remains in a serious condition although he is expected to make a full recovery.

In Plymouth, a retailer was threatened by two raiders brandishing a crossbow. The men entered the Efford Road Post Office at 6am and demanded that cash be put into a plastic bag. The retailer was slightly injured during the robbery when the crossbow made contact with his face. The thieves escaped with money and cigarettes from the store, but Devon & Cornwall Police have arrested a man in connection with the incident.

Two members of staff at the Premier News in Slough suffered injuries when a man entered the store and stole money from the till. The injuries occurred when the staff tried to apprehend the thief. One sustained cuts to his back and head area, while the second underwent surgery for a serious injury to one of his fingers. The injuries, which are believed to have been caused by a knife, are not life threatening.

In response to the number of assaults against retailers, the Association of Convenience Stores recently teamed up with Crimestoppers to create a £50,000 reward fund for information on crimes involving shop workers that leads to a conviction. The fund is reserved for serious cases such as violent assault and murder.

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