PATERSON, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – A robbery spree on Saturday night has some New Jersey shop owners and residents on edge after four businesses were hit in an hour.
Surveillance video from the Power Gas station on Market Street near 21st Avenue in Paterson, N.J., shows a car pull in to get gas around 8:48 p.m., reports CBS2’s Meg Baker.
You then see two men in ski masks with their hoods up walk towards the gas station attendant with guns drawn. One of the suspects hits the worker on the head. They do a dance around the pump, then the attendant is patted down for cash.
As the car speeds off, the robbers sprint away.
Modesto Disla had just left the station. As for his co-worker, “He’s OK, he’s OK… probably they only take $50, $60, something like that.”
This was the second reported robbery in Paterson on Saturday night.
The first was in the downtown area at Krazy Nails. Two people with handguns and a third with a shotgun stole several hundred dollars from the salon.
Police say the three masked men ran from busy Market Street down Church Street.
Investigators are trying to connect this robbery to similar incidents in a different neighborhood, at the gas station and two restaurants.
The owner of Shawni’s Homestyle Restaurant on 31st Street did not want to show her face.
“I’m still traumatized,” the restaurant’s owner said.
She says they took $800, and surveillance footage from outside just catches the legs of the suspects as they enter and exit quickly.
Around the block, Good Kitchen was hit next.
“It becomes lawless out here,” said business owner Ramy Elhelw. “This is not an area you want to drive or walk down.”
Some say a greater police presence is needed. CBS2 reached out to the police director and the mayor for comment but have not heard back.