Police are searching for two men that committed a violent robbery and assault at Gladstone’s Central Lane Hotel on Monday morning.
CCTV footage showed a man armed with an axe force his way into the Hotel behind a female manger as she was about to lock up. Security had reportedly just left, and only two female managers remained to perform closing duties.
After pushing the door open, being held by the surprised manager, the first offender threatened her with the axe he was holding and demanded the other employee join them by the front door. The women were forced to sit on the floor.
Another man then entered, described as overweight and wearing a hoodie. He proceeded straight to the safe and bagged $10,00-15,000 before the pair made their escape in under two minutes.
But prior to exiting, the axe-wielding offender callously knees both women in the face, presumably in some attempt to hinder their pursuit. After leaving the building, the women quickly jump up and lock the front door.
Gladstone Criminal Investigation Branch Detective Senior Sergeant Luke Peachey said the speed of execution suggested the pair were familiar with the hotel and carefully planned the attack, and that police and the public “have been disgusted” by the attack.
“Not only for the actual armed robbery but the fact these two victims in the matter were sitting in a prone position compliant with all the directions of the offender and still violently assaulted.
“It’s absolutely disgusting and a coward act,” he said.
Police are investigating and report that the area was quite busy and that a number of witnesses have come forward saying they saw people running from the address.
Owner of the Hotel, Rick Adams, told the Gladstone Observer the women were understandably shaken up.
See the CCTV footage HERE.