Newark Passes Legislation Requiring Armed Security Guards At All-Night Eateries

NEWARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Newark is trying to make late-night snack runs safer.

The City Council approved a measure Thursday requiring fast food restaurants to post armed guards after 9 p.m. till closing.

The ordinance comes six weeks after off-duty police officer William Johnson, 45, was shot to death while waiting to buy a slice at Texas Fried Chicken and Pizza on Lyons Avenue.

1010 WINS’ Steve Sandberg reports: Is Fried Chicken Worth The Risk?

A 21-year-old man and 19-year-old woman were also injured in the drive-by shooting.

Councilman Ras Baraka says the late-night eateries provide security for themselves – in the form of bulletproof glass and cameras – but not for customers.

Said Yousa, manager of Royal Chicken and Pizza on South Orange Avenue, tells 1010 WINS’ Steve Sandberg the bulletproof glass is the only thing keeping him alive.

“This place is very tough, this place should get more security and more police officers around,” Yousa said. “The people who work here are not safe here.”

A customer who occasionally stops in around 4 a.m. for a bean pie said on some nights, all-hours eateries are powder kegs ready to explode.

“You have Crips, and you’re going to have Bloods, and you’re going to have regular citizens that come to get something to eat at late-night,” he said. “What do you think is going to happen when the crowds mix? It’s going to be a problem. There’s going to be a lot of gang violence and the average person is going to be caught in the middle of it.”

Joey Shore, an employee at Royal Chicken and Pizza, said its scary working late at night and has seen rowdy drunkards come to blows, though, luckily, no one has pulled a gun.

Shore believes only uniformed police officers will deter violent crime.

“Cops should be out here doing their job,” Shore said. “As long as a cop is here, I’m safe, if a cop’s not here, I’m not safe, no matter what.”

Yousa said the new ordinance may put him out of a job, fearing the owner would not be able to afford overnight security and would be forced to close up shop early.

The ordinance will affect eateries that cater to fewer than 20 people; it will not apply to larger, sit-down restaurants.

Do you think having an armed security guard is enough to protect customers and employees? Let us know below…

  • Rob Wane

    A concise statement describing the security tasks to be performed, including the number of days and hours that security is needed. This information should be clearly outlined with the security contractor before security staff is assigned to the site.

  • Security Guard

    Such an informative written article…

  • ColonelSanders

    Ask a politician to solve a problem and all you get are bigger problems.
    The police officer was gunned down in a DRIVE BY SHOOTING- How is an “armed guard” protection against a drive-by? Hmmmmmm Newark City Council;, you bunch of fools!

  • oakcliffkenny

    They don’t require an armed guard at a bank. How does the council justify this burdon on the small business owner? This is wrong wrong dirty and wrong.

  • Dale Auburn

    One natural consequence will be that the gangs themselves will provide the armed guards as part of a classic protection racket.

  • badman

    is this where we’re headed? lock down the whole world. put everyone behind security glass. Pay for your slice of pizza by passing money through a secured, fireproof bank teller’s drawer.

    maybe just nuke the cities and start over. Ra’s Al Ghul had the right idea.

  • Claude

    This law does nothing more than place an undue financial burden on small businesses. One armed security guard won’t stop a drive-by shooting or gang violence. A heavy police presence in the area during late hours can help deter gang incidents, if gang members are aware that police are watching the eateries and will respond. However nothing works against drive-by attacks.

  • Raekwan Cripsworth

    It’s the chicken’s fault for being so mouth-wateringly delicious.

  • A. WOLFE

    Just have an ordinance that stores cannot be open past a certain time in Newark…I grew up there (got the HECK OUT
    If it has come to havign armed guards in EATERIES, we have fallen far…I am NOT a gun advocate at all, but now i am seeing that if we armed EVERYONE (like the OLD WEST), there would be less crime (initially there will be a LOT of homicides from all out gun fights, but AFTER that, it would cool down).
    also allow the Police FREE rein to GUN DOWN ANYONE who does not freeze or DROP to the floor when commanded in those situations

  • I've done the math...

    Crips + Bloods + Fried Chicken = KABLOOEY!

  • Bobbyshades

    Sick Law

  • JasonS

    This is what it has come down to in the BLACK NABES, because BLACK THUGS have effectively turned them into war zones. Children have to be brought up in a war zone because we allow these baggy pant wearing savages to walk around the hood without a care in the world. Forget the armed security guards, the cops should saturate these neighborhoods and make the thug’s lives such a living hell that they prefer to stay at home.

    • Rodin

      I think you mean Koreans. Koreans, the ones who claim poverty, but have money for big screen televisions and tattoos. They say they hae no money to eat, but they are morbidly obese. They pop out kids like a vending machine dispenses soda. They have utter contempt for law and order. Yep, you have got to love those Koreans.

  • Barry Levine

    What good is armed security if the armed guard knows that he will be indicted if he shoots a robber or an extremely unruly patron. Enact a law that indemnifies armed security from shooting someone in the act of robbing, or creating a nuisance, or entering the premises armed.
    The Earl Warren court gave criminals too many rights and with guys like Ron Kuby as a free defense lawyer guys like myself have nothing to fear when WE go in to rob a mom and pop store.

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