New York City’s eight million-plus residents were on the whole cooperative and peaceful during Superstorm Sandy but looters in Coney Island, Brooklyn had another agenda as they ransacked businesses in the aftermath of the historic storm, according to the New York Daily News
As the water from the storm receded on Tuesday, looters descended on the neighborhood, which is home to the Nathan’s 4th of July hotdog eating contest, the Cyclone roller coaster, and the famous boardwalk.
"People were running in and out of Rent-A-Center carrying these big flat screens. They were holding on tight," witness Aisha John, 20, told the Daily News. "I couldn't understand how someone could steal a big TV in broad daylight, but no one cared.”
A young male who said he stole a TV at the Rent-A-Center told the Daily News: "Look, they've been looting our wallets for too long,"
“It's about time we start taking this sh** back," the youth told the Daily News.
Ron Troyano, owner of Joann’s Discount Wine and Liquors in Coney Island, called the looting "complete lawlessness” and said the thieves used tools to break through security gates and steal liquor.
The thieves also hit a Fresh Market in the neighborhood, where, according to employee Fernando Mendoza, a mob of 50 to 100 people "destroyed everything. They stole anything they could get their hands on. Someone even ran off with the cash register.”
"They were literally walking out with shopping carts full of merchandise. They didn't even look worried,” a Rite Aid employee told the paper. “They looked like they were casually shopping. They looked almost happy. I saw an elderly lady walking away with batteries and a bag of Kit Kats.”
There was a stepped-up police presence in parts of the city that were without power following the storm. Officials said power might not be back until the weekend for hundreds of thousands of people. Despite what happened in Coney Island, there was no sign of widespread crime.
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