Evesham shop plagued by crime

Evesham Journal: 0814524001 Paul Jackson Evesham 18.02.14 Sami Periyasali, manager of Mace, Excel News, who have been blighted by shop lifters and abusive people.  (4096844) 0814524001 Paul Jackson Evesham 18.02.14 Sami Periyasali, manager of Mace, Excel News, who have been blighted by shop lifters and abusive people. (4096844)

POLICE have reassured the owner of an Evesham newsagents plagued by regular shoplifters and abuse, that things can be done to help.

Since opening Excel News two years ago - also known as Mace newsagents - owner Sami Periyasali has put up with frequent thefts and abuse.

He has only ever reported his concerns to the police once, for fear he would be constantly 'bothering' them.

But a shop assistant, who does not want to be named, said her boss is fed up with the trouble and is now managing to catch people on CCTV.

She said only this week, Mr Periyasali was attacked by a customer who pinned him up against the wall.

"A young man came in and was trying to deal with the pay machine," she said. "Because Sami didn't understand the bloke got stressed and pinned him up against the wall. He was pinned up against the counter."

The shop assistant said the incident on Monday was just one of a number they have endured over the past few months.

"We have two kids that regularly come and steal quite a lot, they've been caught out lots of times and now they've been banned from the shop," she said.

"Sometimes they come in and we get lots of abuse from them. Their dad came into the shop on Tuesday he was with a little boy and got served.

"He was walking out and took a hand of pick n mix and as he walked out he pulled his trousers down and weed all over the floor."

The assistant said Mr Periyasali had not called the police following last week's incident, or the attack earlier this week.

"My boss doesn't like to keep bothering the police time and time again but we were forced to call them last time [November] they were getting really abusive they were threatening to smash the shop up and set fire to it," she said.

"He's only trying to run his business but when he's losing custom from people stealing, the last thing he wants is a lot of abuse."

Sergeant Phil Stayte, of the Evesham Safer Neighbourhoods Team, said officers will be visiting the store to discuss the problems.

“Our team conduct daily foot patrols in Evesham town centre and will often check on any businesses that have been having issues such shoplifting or anti-social behaviour," he said.

“The High Street is well-covered with live monitored CCTV and shop owners can join the Shop Watch scheme where they are linked up via radio to the CCTV unit and each other.

“We have taken action again persistent problem offenders, local shopkeepers worked closely with us very recently to gain ASBOs for local youths who were causing anti-social behaviour in the High Street.

“Whenever possible we will act swiftly and positively to take action on behalf of local businesses.”

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