#Looters strike several NYC stores — but curfew appears to curb chaos

Looters strike several NYC stores — but curfew appears to curb chaos

June 3, 2020 | 12:30am

Looters struck in Manhattan again on Tuesday, though the damage appeared to be a much smaller than the outright chaos of the previous night, with cops seen making several arrests outside of stores.

Videos posted on social media by reporters showed the NYPD making arrests after a group broke into a Zara at Broadway and Vesey Street near the World Trade Center.

A PBS reporter said he witnessed a brawl erupt outside the clothing store, as a protester attempted to stop the looting.

In another break-in, five men used bats and crowbars to tear off wood panels from Nordstrom Rack on 31 Street and 6th Avenue, shouting “f–k the police,” as they smashed the windows, according to a witness.

The were scared off by cops, and ran away without stealing anything, the witness said. About 30 minutes later, workers were spotted barricading the store again with wood paneling.

Down the block, closer to 5th Avenue, four looters hit a smoke shop, and tried to take the cash register before dropping it, police said. One person, a Queens resident, was arrested, according to the cops at the scene.

The three others were able to make off with bongs, according to a man who lives across the street and filmed part of the incident.

“It’s a shame…,” said Peter Bellingham, 26. “This guy is a small business owner getting out of pandemic and wants to put food on the table for his family and punks come by and smash his windows.”

Police also made several arrests in SoHo, where roving gangs had brazenly bashed through the windows of high-end stores a night earlier.

According to a witness, a group of about 40 people on Tuesday evening tried to breach the Louis Vuitton store in the posh downtown neighborhood, but scattered when cops showed up.

Police also cut off an access point to SoHo at Grand Street and West Broadway after what looked like an attempted looting at the Gucci store, which was hit Sunday night.

“Soho is closed. There’s no Soho tonight,” they said.

It was a far cry from Monday’s spree of rampage, where large groups of young men struck in SoHo and Midtown, breaking into stores and making off with the loot, despite an 11 p.m. curfew.

The city instituted another curfew on Tuesday, this time beginning at 8 p.m. in an attempt to stop the wave of destruction.

In the wake of Monday night’s looting of Macy’s iconic, Herald Square location, Saks Fifth Avenue surrounded its flagship Manhattan store with razor wire to keep thieves from smashing their way in and making off with troves of expensive merchandise.

The luxury retailer has also hired private security guards with specially trained dogs to protect the premises.

Police said they had made 700 arrests on Monday night. It wasn’t immediately clear how many arrests were made Tuesday.


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