2005-01-20 / Front Page

NAB SUSPECT IN AVE. L ROBBERY

Suspect invaded above take-out restaurant just as they were closing last Friday night, police said.Charles RogersSuspect invaded above take-out restaurant just as they were closing last Friday night, police said.Charles Rogers By Charles Rogers

Thanks to a fast response from patrol officers from the 69th Precinct, a suspect who had just allegedly robbed a Chinese take-out restaurant on Avenue L was arrested as he walked along the shopping strip a short distance from the scene of the crime. There were no injuries, police said.

According to a report filed at the Foster Avenue station house, Hazel Choice, 40, whose address was listed only as Brooklyn, was arrested shortly after 11 p.m. on Friday, January 14 two blocks away from the Yi Hong Restaurant at 9103 Avenue L.

Police said Choice entered the restaurant at 11 p.m. just as the manager and an employee were closing for the night. As he put on a ski mask, the suspect allegedly brandished a silver handgun and told the two male employees to give him all the money in the cash register and, when one of the employees hesitated, the suspect fired one shot into the ceiling.

After the store manager gave the money to the suspect, he rifled their pockets, robbed them of their wallets, and then ran out the door, police said.

Just as the victims were calling 911, Police Officers Caesar Dorado and John Rivera were patrolling the shopping strip, saw Choice acting suspiciously and detained him. By the time the report of the robbery came over the police radio, the two officers already had their man. When they searched him, the suspect not only allegedly had the gun, money and ski mask, but also a container of Mace.

Officer Dorado arrested Choice and charged him with robbery, reckless endangerment and criminal possession of a weapon.

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