Local gardai commenced a major investigation and the suspect was quickly identified on CCTV before he was arrested
The bizarre incident unfolded on the Main Street of Greystones, Co Wicklow, at around 6pm on Wednesday.
“He stumbled as he ran out of the shop and dropped the cash and gun – he then picked up the gun but left some of the money behind,” a source said.
Seconds earlier he had threatened the sweet shop worker and brandished what was suspected of being a handgun.
He made off with a sum of around €200 but some of this cash was left on the street by the armed robber.
Local gardai commenced a major investigation and the suspect was quickly identified on CCTV before he was arrested yesterday by Greystones gardai.
“This arrest was the result of excellent police work,” a senior source said.
When officers searched the suspect’s home they recovered what is described as “a very realistic looking imitation handgun” according to the source.
“The staff member would have had no idea that it was not the real deal,” the source added.
The man aged in his 40’s was arrested and is currently detained at Bray Garda Station.
Independent.ie can reveal that he is a career criminal with multiple previous convictions including previous offences relating to the use of an intimidation firearm.
As part of their investigations gardai have been investigating whether the same suspect was responsible for an armed robbery at a supermarket in Greystones last month.
In that case, a lone gunman entered the supermarket at around 10pm on the night as the premises was about to be closed.
It is understood that he “rounded up the employees” and ordered them into a staff room before he escaped with a sum of around €1,500.
Sources say that officers are confident there is no link between Wednesday’s armed robbery at the sweet shop and an horrific aggravated burglary in Greystones on the evening of December 23 last.
There have been no arrests in that case in which two children were forced into the bathroom of their home while the woman who was taking care of the children was tied up by a gang of masked raiders.
Detectives are investigating if the planned aggravated burglary was carried out by one of the country’s most prolific burglary gangs.
Meanwhile gardai announced this morning details of Wednesday evening’s armed robbery.
“Gardaí investigating an armed robbery at a business premises in Greystones, Co. Wicklow on Wednesday 4th January 2023, have arrested a man,” a spokeswoman said in a statement.
“Shortly before 6pm on Wednesday evening, a lone male entered the business premises armed with what is understood to be a firearm. The male threatened a staff member and left the premises on foot with a sum of cash.
“No firearm was discharged during the course of the incident and no injuries were reported.
“Following enquiries by investigating Gardaí, a male (aged in his 40s) was arrested in Greystones yesterday afternoon, Thursday 5th January 2023.
“He is currently detained in Bray Garda Station under Section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act, 1939,” she explained.