Armed thieves brandishing knives threatened staff at two stores.
Police in Wrexham are appealing for information after they targeted two stores in Caia Park.
The first incident happened at the Premier store in Tan y Coed at about 9.40pm when two men brandishing knives entered the shop, while a third man waited outside.
The alarm was sounded and they fled empty-handed.
The second incident occurred at 10.45pm at Pizza Fresh on Prince Charles Road.
Mark Trubshaw, who has owned the Premier Store for 10 years, told the Leader how staff followed their training and hit the shop’s panic button when the men demanded money.
He said: “Luckily, they are well trained and they know the procedures which they followed and fortunately on this instance there was a quick 30 seconds but we have had situations which have lasted a lot longer.
“Fortunately nothing untoward happened but they still have the memories and flashbacks.
“It’s the third time we’ve been done in 10 years now but it never gets any easier.
“Police need to get this under control and resolve it ASAP, because it just can’t carry on like this, at the end of the day staff are just trying to do their jobs and it is hard enough in life, they don’t need to be threatened like that.
“We were already edgy but now they’re hitting food outlets – it does need to be made a priority by the police in order to get them.”
Mr Trubshaw also said he would encourage shopkeepers across Wrexham to remain vigilant and report any suspicious activity to police, adding: “It is unprecedented, no one is safe at the moment.
“The main emphasis is to find them and not to have any other poor shopkeepers go through what we’ve been through and what my staff have been through.”
In the raid at Pizza Fresh three men entered the store, threatened staff with a knife and stole the till before making off on foot.
No one was injured.
DI Mark Hughes said: “There have been a number of similar incidents in the Wrexham area in recent weeks.
“We have a dedicated team working to bring these offenders to justice, but we need information from the community.
“If you have information which could assist our investigation please call us.”
Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101 or they can call Crimestoppers 0800 555 111 if they prefer to give information anonymously.
Please quote reference number V021938 for the Tan Y Coed incident and V021980 for the Prince Charles Road robbery.