A Basingstoke retailer was compelled to close her shop doors for a morning to protest against violence and intimidation from local teenagers.
Renuag Mithradass and her sister, Yasotha, who own Burnaby Post Office and Stores in the town, took the decision after enduring months of shoplifting and abuse from youths who gather outside the store.
Renuag said the final straw came when two members of her staff had to be treated in hospital after being injured by a shoplifter attempting to steal alcohol. She is adamant that if the situation does not improve she and her sister might be forced to shut for good.
"We didn't want to open the store while the people involved in the trouble were still out there," said Renuag. "We've made reports to the police before, but it just keeps happening. I'm really scared for my life and we're fed up with it."
The area around the store is already subject to a police dispersal order, but Renuag says this has done little good.
She added: "The prosecution needs to be much tougher.
People are scared to come to this area. If nothing is done I'll be forced to shut completely."