Northern Ireland

Man with hammer raids shops in Ballymena and Coleraine

Police land rover
Image caption Police have appealed for information about the incidents

Police are investigating a link between three armed raids at shops in Ballymena and Coleraine on Tuesday night.

At about 19:20 GMT a man wearing a balaclava and carrying a hammer entered a shop in Queen Street, Ballymena and told a worker to open the till.

She refused and he left empty-handed. Fifty-five minutes later a man with a hammer stole a cash drawer from a shop at Circular Road, Coleraine.

At 19:25 GMT cash was stolen from a shop on the town's Millburn Road.

No-one was injured during the incidents, but staff were left very badly shaken.

Police have appealed for witnesses to contact them.