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Dramatic Video: Molotov Cocktail Sends Brooklyn Deli Bursting Into Flames

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- Dramatic surveillance video captured a man throwing a Molotov cocktail  into a Brooklyn deli, setting it on fire.

CBS2's Thalia Perez spoke to a worker who was hurt and helped capture the suspect.

"He was threatening, 'I'm gonna kill you. I'm gonna burn the store. I'm going to burn the building down,'" Mohamed Abdulla said.

There were scary moments as a disgruntled customer followed through on his threat. Police say 38-year-old Joel Mangal threw a Molotov cocktail and seconds later everything was up in flames.

Abdulla's father owns the Bedford-Stuyvesant bodega, and Mohamed was working behind the counter when it happened.

"It was so fast, you wouldn't believe it. I was there working in the deli and had customers. Out of nowhere I had glass and fire in my face," Abdulla said.

The incident happened on Nostrand Avenue and Halsey just before 8 a.m. on Saturday.

Abdulla said he ran through the flames to safety.

He suffered burns to his arms and is thankful no one was seriously hurt. He said things could have been a lot worse if a quick-thinking good Samaritan didn't knock a second explosive to the ground.

"If the second one would have came here, the whole building would have been on fire," Abdulla said.

Abdulla said he chased Mangal two blocks to a train station. Mangal is facing multiple charges, including possession of a weapon because police say he slashed Abdulla in the hand while he held him until police arrived.

CBS2's Thalia Perez contributed to this report. This story first appeared on October 31, 2021.

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