Walloon Saloon manager Dannilee Killin stands on the pub's verandah with discarded police tape. The hotel was broken into four times in the last week. On Saturday night hotel residents disturbed the thieves who threw a glass bottle injuring a man.
Walloon Saloon manager Dannilee Killin stands on the pub's verandah with discarded police tape. The hotel was broken into four times in the last week. On Saturday night hotel residents disturbed the thieves who threw a glass bottle injuring a man. Claudia Baxter

High noon for Walloon Saloon

AFTER being robbed four times last week the folk at Walloon Saloon had had enough.

When a group of six, and then seven, thieves broke-in, smashed merchandise and stole from the pub, owner Tony Prentice decided to take a stand.

On Saturday night, after already being robbed three times, Mr Prentice, a friend and two guard dogs staked out his pub.

The lay in wait for the group of thieves to come back for a fourth time.

Sure enough, they broke in again, smashing dozens of bottles of wine.

Mr Prentice confronted the group, who smashed a 1.125 litre bottle of Bundaberg Rum over the head of his friend while the group attempted to flee.

While the man needed stiches to his scalp, he and Mr Prentice successfully forced the bandits to get out.

Despite the presence of CCTV cameras and Saloon management telling the police about the initial break-ins, the thieves came back night after night.

When the Saloon owner had iron bars installed to secure the back door that the group had originally broken in through, the thieves found another way in by pushing in the hotel's sliding doors.

Walloon Saloon hotel manager Dannilee Killin said in the previous break-ins the group had taken dozens of cartons of alcohol.

"I think at the start they were just sussing in the place out," she said.

"They stole three of four cartons on Tuesday night, 12 on Wednesday night and then seven of them came on Friday night and they stole 36 in three minutes."

CCTV footage on Saturday night recorded the six smashing bottles before being chased by Saloon staff.

Ms Killin said since Saturday they'd had people staying in the residence to ensure there are no more break-ins.

Ipswich police said they were continuing their investigations.

Acting Detective Inspector Gary Dixon from Ipswich said detectives were following several lines of inquiry in trying to identify the offenders.

Any one with information regarding the series of thefts from the Walloon Saloon can phone Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.



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