Police say Michael Grimes, 41, pulled out a gun and tried to rob the Dove Diner just after 3 a.m. Thursday in the Richmond Town section of Staten Island.
1010 WINS’ Steve Sandberg speaks with a waitress who witnessed the shooting
Two plainclothes officers on their meal break identified themselves and pulled their own weapons.
“I just gave them a piece of cheesecake and they didn’t get to finish,” waitress Barbara Butler said.
The officers exchanged fire with Grimes who was shot in the leg.
Police said Grimes sped off in a stolen a car and crashed it into a fence about a mile away.
The NYPD said the suspect may have tried to hold up another diner earlier in the night.
Police in Perth Amboy, N.J. confirm there was a hold-up at a Quik Stop just seven minutes prior to the diner robbery. The two locations are on opposite sides of the bridge so it is possible the suspect hit both locales in less than 10 minutes.
Police said Grimes dropped a Yankees baseball cap stuffed with cash that detectives believe he stole from the convenience store.
Grimes is now in custody. He is listed in stable condition at Staten Island University North Hospital.
No police or customers were hurt in the gun battle.
Grimes has five previous robbery arrests, police said.