Do you know this man?
Updated on 29th August 2012
The police need your help in identifying this masked man who has a distinctive walk.
Armed with an imitation firearm, he tried to hold up a betting shop in Mansfield one night last November and police feel sure someone in the Mansfield area will recognise him.
A £10,000 reward is on offer for information which leads to the successful prosecution of the offender.
The 50-second CCTV footage (below) was recorded at around 9.20pm on 9 November 2011, when this man walked into the William Hill betting shop, in the Ladybrook Place shopping precinct, Ladybrook Lane.
The footage shows the man threatening 55-year-old betting shop manageress Carol with a gun, before demanding she hand over cash. Her colleague, Sharon, aged 54, raised the alarm and the man left empty-handed.
There were no customers in the shop at the time of the attack. Neither Carol nor Sharon was injured, but they continue to suffer the effects from the ordeal.
After 34 years with William Hill and nine years at the Ladybrook shop, Carol has not been able to return to the job she loved since that night. She continues to receive counselling and prescription medication and is now afraid to leave the house alone.
She said: “If the man who did this sees this I want to ask him ‘Do you realise what you have done? You have ruined my life.’”
As for mother-of-two Sharon, she was stunned such an incident could happen in her home town.
She said: “I have lived in Mansfield since I was six and have worked at the shop for ten years. I would never have thought something like this could happen, and to me no less.
“I’ve always tried to see the good in people, but after what happened it’s just very clear to me now that there are some nasty people out there.”
Detective Sergeant Stuart Temple, who is leading the investigation, said: “It is clear from the footage that this man was intent on terrifying these defenseless women, without care or concern for their welfare.
“The bravery they both showed, despite the immense threat from an armed man, is a testament to their inner strength. Sharon’s phone call to the police while the man was still in the shop and Carol’s quick thinking to remove herself from the potential line of fire meant no one was injured that night and the offender left empty-handed.”
The man caught on camera is between 5ft 7ins and 5ft 9ins tall and of medium build. He is believed to fair skinned and was wearing a dark-coloured coat with a hooded top and dark-coloured, fitted trousers, possibly jeans. He wore dark gloves on his hands and a cream/yellow mask, which had a beak.
He spoke with a local accent and walked with a distinctive gait.
Police have recovered the gun it is believed the man used in the incident – an imitation pistol-grip, pump-action shotgun, which was discovered under a pile of tyres just a mile from the scene of the crime.
Two men and a woman were arrested and questioned but were subsequently released without charge.
DS Temple said: “I want to hear from anyone who recognises the man in the CCTV footage or the weapon used. I also want to speak to anyone who was in the area on the night of the attack.
“The offender was wearing a very distinctive mask featuring a beak at the front. Have you seen anyone with a mask like this?
“All calls will be treated with the utmost confidence, and if the information you provide leads to prosecution of the offender you may be entitled to a reward of up to £10,000 from The Association of British Bookmakers.”
Witnesses or anyone with any information about the perpetrator of this crime should contact DS Stuart Temple on 101, extension 805 3463, or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111, quoting incident 863 of 9 November 2011.
In an emergency dial 999