A man charged with carrying out a daylight robbery of a South Tyneside shop has been sent to crown court for trial.
Steven Rice is accused of carrying out the raid at the Spar outlet in Lord Street, off Mowbray Road, South Shields, on Saturday afternoon.
Rice, 33, of no fixed abode, did not enter pleas to charges of suspicion of robbery and possession of a knife when he appeared at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court today.
He was remanded in custody to appear at Newcastle Crown Court on Monday, May 14.
Witnesses describe seeing half a dozen police vehicles in the street in response to the incident.
One said: “The area was flooded with police in what must have been the minutes after the alarm was raised.
“They went into the shop in numbers and were in there quite some time.
“This is decent area and it always a shock when anything like this happens on your doorstep.”
Northumbria Police confirmed officers responded to a report of a knifepoint robbery at a shop.
A spokeswoman said: “Officers attended and following inquiries arrested a 33-year-old man. Steven Rice, of no fixed abode.
“He has been charged on suspicion of robbery and for possession of a knife.”
No one from the shop, which was open for business as usual yesterday, would comment.