Update: Two men charged over raid on Freethorpe Post Office, which led to high-speed police pursuit through Norwich

Freethorpe post office and stores which sustained damage to its front door after a robbery on Tuesday evening.  Picture: James Bass Freethorpe post office and stores which sustained damage to its front door after a robbery on Tuesday evening. Picture: James Bass

Thursday, March 13, 2014
12:02 PM

Two men will appear in court this morning to face charges after a raid on a Norfolk post office, which led to a high-speed 10-mile police chase.

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Freethorpe post office and stores which sustained damage to its front door after a robbery on Tuesday evening.

Picture: James BassFreethorpe post office and stores which sustained damage to its front door after a robbery on Tuesday evening. Picture: James Bass

Alex Logan, 30, and Kirk Cracknell, 28, both of no fixed abode, have been charged with a number of offences, after Freethorpe Post Office was raided on Tuesday night.

Logan faces charges of making off without payment, dangerous driving, failing to stop for police, driving without insurance, driving while disqualified and burglary, while Cracknell faces charges of burglary and making off without payment,

Both have been remanded in custody and were due to appear before Norwich Magistrates Court this morning.

The raid led to a police pursuit through communities including Heartsease, Hellesdon and Drayton in the early hours, in which a police car was rammed.

The post office in Freethorpe was burgled at about 10.50pm and police were called to a petrol station in Plumstead Road, Heartsease, where a black Vauxhall Vectra had driven off without paying.

It was then spotted on St Crispin’s Road, near the city centre, at around 12.01am and when it failed to stop for officers it left at speed, towards Taverham.

At around 12.10am the car rammed a police car outside Hellesdon Hospital, on Drayton High Road, and the pursuit continued until 12.15am when the car was stopped.

It was the second time Freethorpe Post Office, on The Green, has been raided in less than five months.

Owner Jo Simpson, 36, said she felt vulnerable and targeted.

Mrs Simpson has always lived in the village and took over the running of the shop when her father retired last March. She celebrated getting married to her husband, Steve, last October but since then has had to deal with two attacks on her shop.

Mrs Simpson said the till was stolen, which contained “practically nothing”. She said: “We empty the till every night - we always have done - and everything is always put away.”

Earlier this week, the two men arrested following the first raid on October 25 appeared in court and avoided going to prison.

Dennis Frodsham, 33, of no fixed address, and Peter Moreland, 35, from Horn Park Lane, London, both admitted to the crime and appeared at Norwich Crown Court on Monday.

Recorder Guy Ayers made Frodsham subject to an 18-month community order and 60 hours unpaid work, as he had already spent many months in custody. Moreland was given a six month jail sentence suspended for two years.

Paper deliveries from Freethorpe Post Office have been suspended until tomorrow (Friday) and the couple hope to be open either today or tomorrow.

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