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Break-In At Ed Sullivan Theater, Lobby Trashed

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(credit: Steve Sandberg/1010 WINS)

(credit: Steve Sandberg/1010 WINS)

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NYC Is A Strange Place

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – It’s an historic setting that gets millions of laughs on a nightly basis, but a break-in at the Ed Sullivan Theater on Sunday was far from funny.

Police have a suspect in custody after being called to an incident at the Ed Sullivan Theater where David Letterman tapes his show.

It happened around 7 a.m. Sunday. A passerby called police to report a burglary.

WCBS 880′s Steve Sandberg reports: Nothing Was Taken, But Lots Of Damage At Ed Sullivan Theater


“I think it’s terrible,” Laura Rivera, of East Harlem, told CBS 2′s Dave Carlin. “I really do think it’s horrible.”

“It’s a really nice area,” Bo Bradley, visiting the city from Tennessee, said. “I can’t imagine why someone would do that.”

A metal bar on the glass doors at the Broadway entrance to the theater was pried open and the glass was smashed. Trash cans and the stanchions for velvet ropes inside the lobby were knocked over. The vestibule was also reportedly damaged.

Police arrested 22-year-old James Whittemore of Manhattan on burglary and criminal mischief charges. Cops say he was drunk. He was taken to the hospital to be treated for cuts.

Whittemore’s roommates had very little to say about the incident.

“It’s definitely a surprise, but we don’t want to talk about it,” one roommate told Carlin.

Crews are working to clean up the broken glass. Police are still investigating.

WCBS 880′s Ginny Kosola reports: Work Underway To Repair Damage


Steve Capala, who works in the area, said that before Sunday’s incident, there never seemed to be a need for around-the-clock security.

“I think it’s very crazy, never happened before,” Capala said. “I don’t know why somebody should do something like that.”

Luckily for Letterman, the doors to the studio and set for his show were padlocked, so it was left alone.

Letterman’s production company, Worldwide Pants, and CBS released a joint statement on Sunday: “The Late Show’s set was not accessed, and the show will be taping as usual tomorrow.”

The theater, which opened in 1927, was once home to the “Ed Sullivan Show.” The “Late Show with David Letterman” started taping at the theater in 1993.

The David Letterman show starts live taping again on Monday after taking a week-long break. The box office to the theater reopened at 11am Sunday.

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