THE manager of a boutique cinema had broken glass held at him by a thief who had hidden inside.

Hundreds of pounds worth of alcohol was stolen from the stock room during a terrifying raid at the Curzon cinema in Colchester.

Rhys Williams, manager at the cinema in Queen Street, had locked up for the night with the help of his supervisor.

However, when he went to collect his things at about 11pm, he heard a noise coming from the stock room.

He said: “We had carried out all the checks and were satisfied there was no-one else there.

“I went to get my things and heard a noise, I thought it was the cleaners but came face-to-face with a man who was loading bags for life with drink.”

Rhys asked the man what he was doing and told him to leave, but the thief flew into a frenzy.

Rhys said: “He started throwing bottles at me and pushing stock over. The stock room was a bomb site.”

After messing up the stock room, the thief turned on Rhys.

He added: “I had a number of bruises from where he threw full bottles of wine at me.

“He came at me with a jagged piece of glass. He pushed me to the floor onto broken glass and ran away with the bags.”


His injuries to his head and arms were not serious, but Rhys had to take four days off work after the shock.

He said: “I have worked in hospitality for 15 years and it’s the first time something like this has happened.”

Police are appealing for information following the incident which happened on April 3.

The attacker is described as being white, aged between 30 and 40 and with a full beard.

He was wearing a black hat, an olive green jacket, a white t-shirt and blue jeans.

Mike Lilley (Lab), councillor responsible for public safety, said it was worrying.

He said: “We are arranging a meeting with the Curzon, Firstsite and zone wardens to discuss the area. It has been included in the list of hotspots to have enhanced policing.

“We are talking with police about improving security.”

A police spokesman said: “If anyone present at the cinema, or in the area at the time, has further information we would urge you to contact Colchester CID on 101.”

The crime reference number to quote is 42/52466/19. Alternatively, call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.