Man arrested over hotel robbery

A MAN has been charged over an armed robbery, in which a Coffs Harbour hotel staff member was allegedly threatened with a syringe last night.

A crime scene was established at the bottle shop of the Pier Hotel in Camperdown St after the robbery at 9.55pm.

In a desperate hold-up, the offender allegedly stole bottles of alcohol before fleeing on foot.

Police officers combed the streets of the Coffs Harbour Jetty looking for the assailant. A breakthrough in the case came today at lunchtime when Coffs Harbour-based Target Action Group police took a man matching the description of the offender into custody.

Coffs Clarence Crime Manager Detective Inspector Cameron Lindsay said a 26-year-old man, of no fixed address, was being held in police custody facing armed robbery charges. Mr Lindsay said the accused was picked up in Moonee Street around 12.30pm.

“It's very pleasing to see an arrest in relation to this incident so quickly,” Mr Lindsay said.

Earlier in the day, police issued a description of the offender. It is alleged he held up an 18-year-old hotel staff member with a capped syringe, making away with two bottles of spirits.

The incident was captured on the hotel's security vision. The vision showed a man of Aboriginal appearance, about 178cm tall, of a solid build with distinguishing features, including a long plaited rat's tail and rotten teeth.

At the time of the robbery, the man was wearing a long-sleeved yellow shirt, grey board shorts and white shoes.

Anyone who can assist police with the case should contact Coffs Harbour detectives via Crimestoppers on 1800 333 000

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