24 Jan 2011

Some dairy owners want right to fight back against robbers

8:45 am on 24 January 2011

A group that represents owners of dairies and small liquor stores says shop owners should be allowed to use weapons to defend themselves against violent attacks.

A liquor store owner suffered a gunshot wound and received a fractured skull when he was hit by a hammer during an armed robbery in Hamilton on Saturday night, the second armed robbery in the city in two days.

Neil Patel from the Association of Dairy, Grocery and Small Businesses says the police don't have the resources to offer protection and shop owners should be able to use hockey sticks or even licensed firearms in some circumstances.

But a spokesperson for the Retailers' Association, Barry Hellberg, says he'd advise against fighting back, and if someone threatens a shopkeeper with a gun it's better to give him what he wants and call the police afterwards.

The 58-year-old shop owner injured on Saturday night is in a serious but stable condition in Waikato Hospital.

On Sunday, police raided a number of addresses in the city looking for the two men involved in the robbery.