The co-owner of a Christchurch dairy that has been robbed nine times in the last seven months says employees are now too scared to work at night.
In the latest robbery, just before 9pm yesterday, a man armed with a gun with a jersey tied around his face entered the Woolston Discounter dairy on Ferry Road.
CCTV footage showed the man trying to flee with cigarette papers and lollies - but he tripped and escaped with just a bag of chips.
Co-owner Sujan Burra said his employees were now too scared to work in the evening, so he and his wife were having to cover the shift.
"If we close earlier we're going to lose the business, you know - we need to pay the rent and the labour.
"So we can't make any profit if we close early so me and my wife are going to be here until nine thirty."
Mr Burra said police had not arrested anyone for any of the nine robberies - and his was not the only dairy on Ferry Road that has been affected by several robberies recently.
In March RNZ reported a Night n' Day store 160m away had been targeted eight times in seven months.
Police are running a month-long campaign as they try to crack down on violent crimes, offering to reward people who provide information leading to successful prosecution.
It comes after a rise in violent crime, particularly armed robberies in south Auckland, prompted Auckland dairy and liquor store owners to form the Crime Prevention Group to protest the attacks and seek more police action.
In other developments today, Counties Manukau Area Commander Dave Glossop said some thieves were trying to sell stolen cigarettes back to dairy owners.