After a reign of terror throughout Griffith, Cootamundra, Wagga and Hume areas, police have taken two men into custody this morning (Monday) in what police hope to be the end of Griffith LAC’s Strike Force Carolan.
The two men on the run from police after a series of alleged robberies and other offences throughout the Riverina and Hume districts in southern NSW have been arrested in Wollongong.
From Friday November 10 through to this morning Monday November 13 a number of armed robberies, aggravated break and enters and a carjacking occurred in Griffith, Cootamundra, Wagga Wagga, and The Hume Local Area Commands.
In one incident on Sunday November 12, a woman was hit in the stomach with the end of a firearm during an aggravated break and enter at Yanco.
It is further alleged two men have been travelling throughout the state’s south in a number of different stolen cars.
About 10pm on Sunday police attempted to stop the men who were travelling in a stolen Nissan Patrol utility on the Hume Motorway at Mittagong.
The stolen Nissan did not stop and police initiated a pursuit just south of Bargo. At about 10.30pm, the stolen Nissan rammed a marked police car at Colo Road in Colo Vale.
The stolen Nissan managed to drive a short distance before the two men fled into nearby bushland.
A woman who was also travelling in the car was arrested and is assisting police with their enquiries at Bowral Police Station.
No officers were injured during the incident but the police car sustained substantial damage.
A search of the area was conducted but the men were not located. Police seized the stolen Nissan utility for forensic examination.
Earlier on Monday November 13 police were involved in pursuits with other stolen cars in the Camden and Wollongong Local Area Commands.
Just after 11am, two men ran from a stolen vehicle at Figtree in Wollongong.
Police initiated a foot pursuit, and as a result two men, aged 24 and 26, were arrested nearby.
Both men were taken to Wollongong Police Station and are assisting police with their enquiries.
Strike Force Carolan was established by detectives from Griffith Local Area Command, and is now liaising with other commands to investigate all incidents.
Chief Inspector John Wadsworth hopes this signals the end of the incidents.
“This operation by Griffith LAC has been heavy on resources from both Griffith LAC and as a region, and has involved police air wing, dog squad and significant state resources. We hope it has come to an end because we realise that many people have been affected by these robberies. We always remember the good people who work at cash registers on weekend just trying to earn a dollar, our thoughts are with them and everyone who suffered from these man, after what they’ve been through,” he said.
He also says police have heard reports of footage taken of the incidents around Griffith, and urges anyone who has this footage to hand it over to police to assist in investigations.
“Police have been told that someone may have filmed on their camera of what has happened, if they wish to remain anonymous they can absolutely do that, but if they want to give footage it will be taken in the strictest confidence and will be of great assistance,” he said.
Police are urging anyone with information in relation to these incidents to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or use the Crime Stoppers online reporting page. Information provided will be treated in the strictest of confidence.