Bronx Store Clerks Foil Robbery, Witnesses Wonder Why


Man, expectations for retail employees have gotten to be really low lately. After two clerks working at an AutoZone in the Bronx on East 149th Street foiled a would-be thief by chasing him down and tackling him, they dialed 911 and attempted to hold him until police could arrive. (The thief, a homeless man, threatened to give them AIDS with a dirty syringe.) While they waited, a crowd began to gather and start heckling them. “It’s not your store!” they shouted at 19-year-old Oscar Catalan and 23-year-old Nelson Lozada. “Why do you care?” As the crowd grew more agitated, the homeless man struggled free and escaped. He was later busted by police patrolling 138th Street nearby. Lozada and Catalan hope to send a message to similar aspiring thieves that the AutoZone isn’t so easy to knock down: They say they get one to four shoplifting attempts every day. Judging by the remarkable cover shot on the Post today, we’re guessing at least some people will get the picture.

Which raises the question: How, exactly, did a Splash News photographer arrive on the scene at 149th Street in the Bronx — in order to take that striking photo — when it took ten more minutes for police to arrive?

’Catch’ of the day [NYP]