Violent deli robbery caught on tape

March 9, 2010 2:54:05 PM PST
A vicious beating and robbery at a deli in New Jersey was caught on surveillance tape. One minute, the suspect was a customer, ordering his morning coffee and a buttered roll. The next, he was brutally beating the man who served him his breakfast.

Mohammed Ali isn't a boxer, but he looks like he just stepped out of the ring. The 62-year old deli clerk has cuts and bruises all over his head and back after he was severely beaten during a robbery.

"I didn't see him. My backside, he hit me in the head," Ali said.

It all happened at the BPRJ deli on Baldwin Avenue in Jersey City. Surveillance video taken at 8:20 a.m. last Saturday shows the suspect approaching Ali from behind with a heavy metal chair. He hits him three times before Ali, true to his name, fights back and pushes the robber into a shelf of food. Ali was knocked unconscious. He says he still feels dizzy and afraid.

"Still I'm afraid. When I come in the store, I'm afraid. I cannot stay alone here," Ali said.

The robber left Ali bleeding on the floor, raided two cash registers and fled. Ali's son, who owns the deli, estimates he got away with close to 500 dollars.

"If the lawmakers give me permission to shoot them, then I'll shoot them," owner Mohammed Salim said.

Salim hopes that by releasing the video, someone will identify the ruthless robber. Ali believes he's been a customer here before. The video shows him sitting in the chair he eventually used as a weapon, waiting until the store was empty before locking the door and attacking.

If you recognize the man, please call Jersey City Police.

It's the third time in three years that this deli was robbed. After the last one, the family installed a dozen surveillance cameras