The crooks are making good use of the Big Apple’s vacant storefront – a review by The Post to get into businesses that are still up and running next door through the walls.
Nearly half of small businesses shut down citywide due to the coronovirus epidemic and the resulting economic downturn, but clever crooks are taking advantage by using closed stores to hit open stores after hours.
The owner of a small business in Queens called it “a perfect storm for any thief”.
“I don’t leave money in the shop anymore,” Sabri Dani, owner of Dani’s Pizza in Kew Gardens, said on Monday. “I’m afraid someone’s gonna go in.”
“Crime is forgotten,” added Mark Gjonaj of the city council, chairman of the council’s small business committee. “An empty storefront forgets another storefront. I feel like I’m watching a slow train wreck that I can’t stop. “
A few hours earlier, burglars at Davidoff, a Geneva cigar shop in Midtown, valued him at about $ 60,000 after he broke through the empty store next door, according to police.
But the Sixth Avenue retailer has not been the only target.
On February 9, a rogue threw a brick through the front door of a store for lease on Staten Island and broke into a Dominican food store next door on Forest Avenue, a worker confirmed on Monday.
Two days ago, the thieves closed with a $ Metro from a Metro PCS store on Knockerbocker Avenue in Brooklyn, smashing through a hole in the wall of “an abandoned establishment” next door, police said.
On January 16, burglars broke into an AK studio on King’s Highway in Brooklyn and stole a quantity of wig and hair products after entering from an empty building next door.
Police said the thieves entered the Broadway Daily & Grill in the Bronx on 23 December.
Coppers said the burglars built Philomena’s Pizzeria in Queens in October with $ 180, climbing the roof and breaking the kitchen wall.
A police source told the Post, “A theft is a crime of opportunity, especially if the building is abandoned and the store next door contains merchandise,”. “If the building is abandoned, no one is paying attention.”
“It is very easy right now because the adjacent company does not have an alarm,” the source said. “Burglars know that … it’s a very easy crime.”
In addition, many stores that are still operating are closing earlier during the epidemic, giving businesses more time to stake, Dani’s Pizza’s Dani noted.
“That’s one of the reasons we don’t want vacancies,” said Phil Andrews, president of the Long Island African-American Chamber of Commerce.
“We’ll have to protect the property in the meantime,” Andrews said. “Burglars stole copper, silver and metals from shops and took them to scrapers and took money from them. They would steal the equipment.”
Andrew Albert, former executive director of the West Manhattan Chamber of Commerce, said landlords incurred costs to repair the damage done by the burglars.
“Any empty shopper must have an alarm,” he said.