Revoke Birmingham Costcutter’s licence following shooting: Police

By Mark Cardwell, Local Democracy Reporter

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Google Street View image of Costcutter, Great Hampton Row, Newtown, Birmingham.

Police want a Costcutter shop’s licence to be revoked after alleged shootings and a stabbing “in and around” the premises in Birmingham.

The shop in Great Hampton Row, Newtown, was forced to close by West Midlands Police in May, 48 hours after a man was reportedly shot outside.

A decision made at Birmingham Magistrates’ Court extended the closure for three months, and city councillors are due to review the shop’s licence to sell alcohol in a meeting on June 29.

A letter submitted to a Birmingham City Council licensing sub-committee from PC Abdool Rohomon states there were “firearm discharges” in both December and May as well as a stabbing in January.

PC Rohomon also alleges the shop is “complicit” in allowing drug dealing, weapons, staff fighting, sale of alcohol to believed minors, drunk people, and the breaching of Covid 19 regulations.

He said many neighbours “are too fearful to speak out”, and drug dealers feel “at ease” to operate outside the shop and “pass their drugs to the staff” when officers arrive.

He also accused the shop of failing to provide CCTV.

His letter states: “West Midlands Police licensing are seeking to have the premise licence revoked, on the basis that they are not promoting the licensing objectives, especially around crime and disorder, public safety, public nuisance and protecting children from harm, and that by not doing so this is allowing the level of criminality and the seriousness of the offences committed outside to increase substantially.

“Evidence from officers shows that the premise has been complicit in allowing crime and disorder, anti-social behaviour both in the premise and immediately outside.”

Four other complaints about the business from members of the public were also received.

One letter states: “This shop in the Newtown community, where I live, […] has been part of our community for many years and has always been a safe place for our children.

“However, […] it has become notorious for being a hangout for many gangs in Newtown. This is fuelled by the negligence of the staff that work in the convenience store who turn a blind-eye to the misconduct that takes place in front of their shop.”

Costcutter franchise owner Naz Ali has previously acknowledged there have been “a lot of” incidents but said they have happened outside and there has never been an incident inside the shop.