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Dairy owner Crystal Cao (30) said she was behind the counter in the Dunedin dairy and was opening up a stack of newspapers with scissors when a thin Caucasian man, about 1.7m tall and between 30 and 40 years old, shouted: ''I want money, I want money.''
Her husband was away in Invercargill but her 1-year-old and 5-year-old daughters were in the house at the back of the dairy watching television.
Thinking of her daughters, she shouted at the man: ''What are you doing here? What are you doing here?'' as he walked towards her.
The man then noticed the scissors and ran away, Ms Cao said.
''It does scare me and I hope police can get the guy,'' she added.
She had lived in Dunedin for three years and had owned the dairy for two months.
It was the only robbery attempt since she bought the shop, she firstname.lastname@example.org