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Armed robbers hit new East Village smoke shop for $5.4K just days after its opening

BY THE VILLAGE SUN | Police are looking for a gun-packing trio who knocked off a new East Village smoke shop to the tune of thousands of dollars.

According to cops, on Wed., Aug. 3, just before 1 a.m., three men entered Runtz Tobacco, at 14 First Ave., between E. First and E. Second Streets, and one of them aimed a black firearm at the 20-year-old male employee’s stomach. They then swiped roughly $3,000 from the register and $2,400 worth of CBD.

A surveillance image of the alleged suspects. (N.Y.P.D.)

After grabbing the goods, the robbers ran out of the store, sprinting northward on First Avenue.

There were no injuries reported from the stickup.

The CBD thieves didn’t wait long to strike the new shop. According to EV Grieve, the place had just opened 10 days earlier, on July 25.

The unidentified males are described as in their 20s, with thin builds. The first suspect wore a light-colored hooded sweatshirt, black pants, black sneakers, a black cloth around his head and a green face mask. One of his sidekicks wore all black clothing and a blue face mask. The third guy sported black clothing, a black face mask and a light blue bookbag.

Police released surveillance photos and video of the alleged suspects taken at the incident location.

Police ask that anyone with information call the N.Y.P.D.’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). Tips can also be submitted on the Crime Stoppers Web site at or on Twitter at @NYPDTips. Tips can result in cash rewards. All tips are strictly confidential.

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