Red Poke’s Ray Park says that local business owners should be extra careful after his Hell’s Kitchen store was broken into today.

The smashed front door at Red Poke this morning.

Early this morning, a thief smashed the glass front door of the Red Poke location on 8th Avenue and W53rd Street. The robber had spotted an electric scooter in the store, which he took.

YouTube video

Security camera footage showed the burglar starting to break the front door glass at 5:27am. The thief then went away for a short while — and according to NYPD stole a sandwich and coffee from the nearby 7/11 — before entering the store at 6am and taking the delivery scooter.

Ray Park at the 9th Avenue location in May 2010.

“I’d warn other local business owners to make sure that there is nothing valuable that can be seen from the front window when they lock up,” Ray told us. He said that the front door will cost $1,000 to $1,200 to repair and the scooter $750 to replace. His insurance deductible is $2,500 — so the loss will be from his own pocket.

“It’s hard to keep doing business in this pandemic,” Ray said. “We are trying to survive. It’s not easy to deal with the pandemic and a burglary at the same time.”

NYPD at the scene of the robbery this morning on 8th Avenue.

We asked whether he felt this crime had any “Asian Hate” motivation. He didn’t believe so but told us he had faced abuse when walking through Time Square when “two people cursed on me”. “Most of the time now I use a scooter to get around. It’s just a reality, everyone’s not like that and I’ve learned to be careful,” shared Ray.

If you have any information about the robbery — call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477). You can also share information confidentially on their website or via Twitter @NYPDTips

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  1. I would be happy to donate to a GoFundMe for Ray if there is one you know of. (I have no idea how to start one myself)

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