Thieves break into New York City food court, steal cash from vendors

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Wednesday, September 28, 2022
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A popular food court in Lower Manhattan, UrbanSpace, was robbed overnight and police are now searching for the suspects. Mike Marza has the story.

LOWER MANHATTAN (WABC) -- A popular food court in Lower Manhattan was robbed overnight and police are now searching for the suspects.

UrbanSpace, located on 100 Pearl Street, is a joint business food court where 16 small business food shops opened in late June.

Many of the vendors were robbed overnight after two suspects went straight for safes and cash registers.

"The other is like the lookout, and they went straight for register, it couldn't work, took money, took tip money, my poor guys work for," said Michael Petrovitch, owner of Que Chevere.

Petrovitch is a retired Marine and a father of six. He had just opened his second location of the Puerto Rican restaurant.

"Every day is a struggle, holidays just past bleak then there are some days we're really busy," he said.

Lawrence Mach owns Senshi Ramen and Coney Shack. The thieves took cash from both.

"Smalls businesses just starting up, for most small businesses we're just making it, we're just trying to grow the business," Mach said.

It appears the robbers broke in through a glass door around 3:30 a.m. They somehow got into a locked office and found keys to the individual businesses.

"There's speculation it could've been an inside job because they knew certain things about the facility," Petrovitch said.

Detectives retrieved video from a network of cameras that captured most of the duo's moves as they hopped from one shop to another.

Petrovitch said they made off with about $700 from the register and his safe.

However, he said there was a parting surprise for the thieves as the safe was empty.

Police are still looking for the two suspects as the food vendors try to recover their losses.

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