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Man and woman caught on CCTV after raid on Sheppey vape shop TJ's E-Cigarettes


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Raiders smashed into a vape shop and then wheeled away thousands of pounds of goods in a shopping trolley, it is claimed.

They are said to have struck at TJ's E-Cigarettes store in Leysdown High Street on the Isle of Sheppey in the early hours of Thursday.

CCTV captures a man and a woman approaching TJ's E-cigarettes store in Leysdown
CCTV captures a man and a woman approaching TJ's E-cigarettes store in Leysdown
CCTV shows a man stopping to put on a mask and a hoodie near TJ's E-cigarettes store in Leysdown
CCTV shows a man stopping to put on a mask and a hoodie near TJ's E-cigarettes store in Leysdown

A man and a woman were caught by a security camera approaching the premises at 3.30am. The man, wearing a Puma top, can be seen stopping to put on a mask and cover his head with a hoodie.

Later footage shows them pushing a packed shopping trolley away from the scene.

The thieves also stole a till which was later found abandoned in the grounds of nearby Harts Holiday Park.

It is believed another couple were in on the raid, too. They can be seen in the footage on the opposite side of the road, apparently operating as look-outs.

Store owner Terry Utting said: "We only opened this shop in June. Like many small businesses we have struggled throughout the Covid lockdowns. We've had such a bad time and were hoping to get back to normal.

Owner Terry Utting after the raid at TJ's E-cigarettes store in Leysdown
Owner Terry Utting after the raid at TJ's E-cigarettes store in Leysdown
Owner Terry Utting after the raid at TJ's E-cigarettes store in Leysdown
Owner Terry Utting after the raid at TJ's E-cigarettes store in Leysdown

"This shop is for the community. As well as e-cigarettes we hire mobility scooters to the elderly.

"We also sell and rent e-scooters and electric bikes to holidaymakers visiting the Island. This was the last thing we, or the village, needed. It will take weeks before I can reopen. They cleared us right out."

The thieves broke in by smashing a glass panel in the front door and then trashed the inside. They emptied glass display cases and wooden drawers packed with goods worth an estimated £4,000.

Mr Utting said: "The shelves were all filled up. Now there is nothing left. They even took the till."

It is understood a nearby shop was also targeted by shoplifters on Wednesday.

Ransacked counter at TJ's E-cigarettes store in Leysdown
Ransacked counter at TJ's E-cigarettes store in Leysdown
Open boxes after the raid at TJ's E-cigarettes store
Open boxes after the raid at TJ's E-cigarettes store
Empty display cases after the raid at TJ's E-cigarettes store in Leysdown
Empty display cases after the raid at TJ's E-cigarettes store in Leysdown

Mr Utting also has stores in Sheerness, Sittingbourne, Chatham, Gillingham, Gravesend, Maidstone and Milton Regis.

A police spokesman said: "Officers are investigating a report that a quantity of e-cigarettes and a till containing cash were stolen during a burglary at a shop between 5.30pm on October 13 and 8am on October 14."

Anyone with information should call 01795 419119 quoting crime reference 46/204176/21.

Information can also be given anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555111 or by using its online form on its website.

To get the latest updates in ongoing cases, police appeals and criminals put behind bars, click here

Read more: All the latest news from Sheppey

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