Couple tied up at knifepoint during ‘terrifying’ raid on Barnton house
POLICE have appealed for witnesses after a couple were tied up and robbed at knifepoint in a “terrifying” ordeal in their home in a quiet, leafy suburb.
The pair were restrained for about an hour, while their home in a tranquil cul-de-sac in Edinburgh’s Barnton Avenue West was ransacked by three masked men. Just under £5,000 in Hong Kong dollars, euros and sterling was taken, as well as jewellery worth approximately £15,000.
In what police believe was a “targeted and “pre-planned” attack, the 48-year-old woman was grabbed by the men when she returned home at 9:30pm on Friday. She was then forced into the house and tied up.
When her 58-year-old husband returned home about 15 minutes later, he too was tied up by the robbers. The man eventually managed to loosen his bindings after the robbers left and telephoned the police.
The couple were not seriously injured, but were said to have been left shaken by their ordeal.
The suspects, three men, all white, wore dark clothing. Two were around 6ft tall, and spoke with foreign accents, the other with a Scottish accent. One man was wearing white trainers.
Police have not yet been able to identify which country the foreign accents originated from.
Yesterday, Detective Inspector Gordon McCreadie, of Lothian and Borders Police, said: “This has been a terrifying experience for this couple who have been threatened with violence and restrained in their own home.
“A team of detectives is now investigating this robbery and uniform officers are carrying out house-to-house inquiries in the neighbourhood. We know the vennel nearby is popular with dog walkers and cyclists, so I’m asking anyone who may have been in the area on Friday, and who may have seen any suspicious activity, suspicious vehicles, or anything out of the ordinary, to contact us.”
DI McCreadie said detectives were examining the possibility that the couple, who both work in retail, had been specifically targeted.
“We are looking into the couple’s lifestyle to see why they were chosen,” he said.
He also appealed for any members of the public with CCTV footage to contact the police. No information is as yet available on the cars used for the robbers’ getaway.
Yesterday, neighbours in the upmarket street where most houses are guarded by automatic security gates and hidden behind 8ft-high hedges, said they were still coming to terms with events.
A neighbour, who did not want to be named, said: “It’s very worrying. There’s always break-ins in this street.
“There are a lot of large houses here and so I suppose we’re seen as easy pickings.”
Another neighbour said; “I’m terrified, to be honest. This area is quite private and we watch out for each other. The couple are very, very, shook-up. It’s extremely shocking, not the kind of thing you think could happen on your doorstep.”
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