CBS2 Exclusive: Armed Robbery Victim Who Was Forced To Give Up His Clothes At Gunpoint Speaks Out
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- A man was forced to strip down to his underwear during an armed robbery in Far Rockaway Friday.
Police say the 24-year-old victim was trying to enter a home on Neilson Street around 6:30 pm when he was approached by a man armed with a gun.
The suspect pointed the gun at the victim's head and demanded his clothes.
The 24-year-old, who was wearing a suit, can be seen on surveillance footage handing over his overcoat, jacket, shoes, and pants before the suspect flees in an unknown direction.
In an exclusive interview, the victim, who only wanted to be identified as Michael, told CBS2's Jessica Borg that being held up at gunpoint was the scariest moment of his life.
"He's like 'take off your clothes," he said. "I let out a little scream, and he says, 'shut up or I'm going to shoot you.' So I got silent pretty quickly."
Michael is from Ohio and was visiting family in Far Rockaway. He's an Orthodox Jew and was returning home from prayer services when the robbery happened.
It was frigid outside that night, with the wind chill below freezing.
"When you're scared, you don't really feel. The weather is not going to make a difference. You're shaking because you fear for your life," Michael said.
Neighbors can't believe what happened.
"I've never seen anything like that. It's a pretty scary world we live in today, you can't walk around feeling secure," Victor Aragon said.
"That's horrible, this is a really nice neighborhood. But I can't even imagine, I hate to see that. And that's right here, I live right across the street, that's crazy," Paul Godette said.
Police say the suspect is Hispanic and in his mid 20's, approximately 5'7" and 150 pounds, with curly hair. He was last seen wearing a medium color-toned hooded sweatshirt, dark jeans, and black and white sneakers.
Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to call the NYPD's Crime Stoppers Hotline at 800-577-TIPS or for Spanish 1-888-57-PISTA (74782).
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