Police Hunt Gap-Toothed Gunman


By Alexander Lawrie

POLICE are hunting a gap-toothed armed robber after an Edinburgh bookies was held up at gunpoint.

The man burst into a branch of Fernieside Racing brandishing what appeared to be a firearm, but despite the lone female member of staff facing repeated threats the robber fled empty-handed.

It is thought the robber targeted the small independent bookmakers because he knew it would be quiet due to the Edinburgh Derby being played at the time.

Manager Gus Brooks, 53, said the elderly female member of staff is still “very shaken” after facing the gunman.

He said: “We still quite can’t believe this has happened. Although he didn’t manage to get any cash, it’s still a very traumatic experience to go through.

“The member of staff was only filling in for us as we wanted to watch the match, and I think he has specifically come in at this time because he knew it would be quiet.

“The poor woman has only just retired, and today she is still very shaken by the whole experience.

“She was so brave to refuse him, especially after what happened to that poor young guy down in England last week.”

Craig Hodson-Walker, 29, was brutally gunned down last week after trying to stop an armed robbery at his father’s post office in Fairfield, Worcestershire.

Sunday’s incident happened at around 3pm (11/01) at a bookmaker’s premises in the Gilmerton area of the city.

Mr Brooks admitted he is now considering installing CCTV in an effort to protect his property.

The Edinburgh bookie also revealed this is the second time one of his shops has been attacked by armed men.

Two men forced their way into the Newhaven branch of Fernieside Racing in June 2007 before slashing the then manager on the hand.

The robbers escaped with a three-figure sum.

The suspect wanted in connection with Sunday’s robbery attempt is described as white, in his late teens or early twenties and is around 5ft 8ins tall.

He was wearing a dark jacket with the hood up, and dark jeans.

It is possible that he also had a tooth missing, or a noticeable gap in his teeth.

Lothian and Borders Police are appealing for witnesses and a spokesman said: “Although no-one was injured this was an extremely serious incident that caused great distress to those working in the premises.

“We want anyone who was in the area at the time and noticed the suspect there to contact police immediately.

“Similarly, anyone with any other information that can help us identify the suspect should also get in touch.”