Restaurant security footage captured the moment a suspect targeted an employee with a handgun days after the New York City owners said the same man had struck a customer with a baseball bat and “cracked his head wide open.”
(Video: CBS News)
Boishakhi Restaurant serves Bangladeshi cuisine nestled between Astoria and Long Island City, Queens since its opening nine years ago. Now, owner Abu Taher told CBS News that he is “scared to run a small business” after the safety of his family and employees were threatened and one of them was shot in the buttocks.
Saturday afternoon, customers could be seen scrambling out onto the street as a suspect wearing a red hoodie entered the location and fired three rounds in pursuit of a 35-year-old employee who fled over the counter.
“At first gunshot he did on that side,” owner Abu Taher explained to CBS News pointing to the far side of display cases of food. “We had a lot of customers inside. Once he move around, then he come to here and shot and he went inside my counter and did the third shot to one of my employees.”
“He did not say anything. He just comes and just shot and ran away,” the owner went on.
Reports indicated that the victim had been struck in the upper thigh and local man Nelson Burgos stepped in to help. “The guy didn’t even know he got shot until we saw him bleeding and then from there I just helped him and I called 911,” the samaritan told CBS News. “He seemed calm. I kept him calm and you know I just told him wait for the ambulance, it’ll be alright. He wasn’t bleeding too crazy, so I know he’ll be alright.”
Speaking with the New York Daily News, the owner contended, “This is the second incident at the same place with the same guy. He hit another customer with a baseball bat. He cracked his head open.”
It was also reported that an employee had had an argument with the suspect earlier in the week, but Taher’s wife had nothing but kind words to say for their wounded employee.
“He’s very respected. Very reliable. Very kind,” she told the New York Daily News. “When the customers come in he tries to help. Even if the customer doesn’t have two dollars he tries to give them food. He won’t turn away people.”
The victim, who was taken to Elmhurst Hospital and was reported in stable condition, was also said to send the money he earns back to his family in Bangladesh.
The suspect reportedly fled the scene on foot and no arrests had been made. As police invited anyone with information to send in tips to the investigation, Taher expressed that it is no longer safe to run a business in New York.
“Definitely scared, you know. It’s a very small business. I’m really scared to run a small business in New York City,” he told CBS News. “It’s not safe, actually. We are not safe. Our life is not safe.”
Taher’s argument comes amid an ongoing crime problem in the Big Apple that, like other major metropolitan areas promoting leftist policies, has seen retailers shutting down or taking extreme measures to prevent shoplifters, including locking most merchandise away.
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