A machete-wielding man and two masked accomplices robbed an upscale Chelsea Mexican restaurant last week, stealing an entire cash register while a customer sat at the bar staring at his phone, apparently oblivious to the crime in progress, police say.
The men robbed the bar at Crema on West 17th Street at about 10:30 p.m. Friday, demanding cash from a bartender, according to the NYPD.
Surveillance video from the restaurant shows a robber chasing off a bartender with a machete while the two other suspects stand nearby. The machete-wielding suspect is then seen ripping a cash register from behind the bar, and all three run away.
Police say they were last seen heading west on West 17th Street toward Seventh Avenue.
The surveillance video shows one patron sitting at the bar throughout the heist. A witness told the New York Times that the patron told detectives he did not even know what was happening and had been staring at his phone the entire time.
No injuries were reported in the robbery.
Anyone with information about the suspects is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS.