Two hungry bandits shot a patron during a robbery attempt at the outdoor dining area of an upscale East Side restaurant on Wednesday night, police reported.
Law enforcement sources said the gunmen ambushed patrons seated outside Philippe Chow restaurant, located at 33 East 60th St., at about 10 p.m. on Sept. 15.
According to authorities, one of the crooks confronted a 28-year-old male diner, pointed a firearm at him and moved to steal property. But the diner resisted the attempt, leading to a physical struggle.
During the battle, cops said, the bandit blasted a bullet that struck the victim’s leg.
The other suspect, police reported, menaced another patron, a 31-year-old man, with a firearm and was able to remove from him a Rolex watch.
Following the robbery, the perpetrators entered a nearby, dark-colored SUV that fled the scene in an unknown direction, authorities said.
Officers from the 19th Precinct responded to the incident. EMS took the 28-year-old man to NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, where he was listed in stable condition. No other injuries were reported.
During a Sept. 16 press conference at One Police Plaza, Chief of Detectives James Essig credited officers for saving the man’s life, as they quickly applied a tourniquet to the man’s injured leg to stop the bleeding.
Police sources said a black 9mm handgun was recovered at the scene. A round was later found to have jammed inside of the weapon, preventing it from causing any further harm.
A third individual, the driver of the SUV, is also thought to be involved, according to Essig. It is not currently known if the patrons held up at gunpoint were specifically targeted.
“We believe the patrons have no connection to another. The two perps come out and they go right to the tables that each individual was sitting at. We believe this is a robbery for high-end jewelry,” Chief Essig said.
No arrests have been made in the ongoing investigation, police said.
Anyone with information regarding the incident can call Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS (for Spanish, dial 888-57-PISTA). You can also submit tips online at crimestoppers.nypdonline.org, or on Twitter @NYPDTips. All calls and messages are kept confidential.