Businessman wants better lighting after robbery

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A Browne’s Avenue businessman is calling for the Antigua Public Utilities Authority (APUA) to install more streetlights after he and several patrons were robbed at gunpoint on Friday night. Patrick Laurent told OBSERVER media he believes if the area was well lit the men would not have been “so brave” to have robbed the establishment at the time that they did.

The incident is believed to be linked to the robbery of the OD Snackette on the same night, during which armed men made off with cash, two camouflage jackets and other items from the store and patrons, and shot a man in the leg before fleeing the scene.

In recounting the event which took place at around 11:15 p.m. that night, Laurent said that the men were dressed in all black, with one wearing a camouflage jacket. He said that he was held at gunpoint by one man, two more went to an area where men were gathered playing dominoes. “I heard shots. I saw two in the roof and they let one go on the table where the guys were playing dominoes,” he explained.

The businessman said that the robbers barely spoke and resorted to gestures to direct those around. He said the criminals, who had “big guns” seemed to be familiar with his business place and described the crime as “professionally done.” He said the bandits took money from the men who had been playing dominos and also made off with about E.C. $1, 005 and about U.S. $800 from the cash register.

“I work so hard for my little cash and my wife an all is not well and she has to be out there doing her little barbeque chicken and her little pork and so and somebody jus come and take it like that … it’s not a nice thing,” he said.

The shop owner said that although he was shaken by the incident, he is “not afraid” and he would have to be killed before he moves from the area. Anyone with information should call the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) at 462-3913/4 or the nearest police station.

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