Horrifying video footage released by the FDNY on Sunday shows a man toss two Molotov cocktails at a Brooklyn deli. Due to the flames in their store, two Brooklyn deli workers narrowly escaped being burned alive.
The shocking incident took place at NR Rock Deli in Bedford-Stuyvesant on Saturday. Joel Mangal, 38, allegedly was behind the attack. He carried out the attack after he got into an argument there with staff, according to the New York City Fire Department (FDNY). Mangal was arrested for the alleged use of improvised incendiary devices, commonly known as "Molotov Cocktails," that resulted in damage and destruction of the deli.
Deranged Firebug Tossed a Molotov Cocktail into the Store
Mangal allegedly successfully throw one Molotov cocktail into the store, a surveillance video from outside the store shows. When the accused was about to lit a second device, a good Samaritan mediated and that device fell to the sidewalk, creating a blaze that spread toward a parked car, reported PIX11 News.
Surveillance footage from inside the store shows the moment the first bottle exploded, instantly consuming the deli counter in flames. The workers jumped through wall of flames to escape being burned alive. One worker fell as he tried to run out; one of his shoes was on fire.
Mohamed Abdulla, an employee at the family-run deli, said a man he had never seen before came into the deli and got into a spat with one of the store's regular customers, reported New York Daily News.
"After he had an argument with the regular customer, they went somewhere together, [he] came back, asked for the guy that was here."
"He started cussing and threatening and all of that, [thinking] that we were lying about it. After that, he just started cursing and broke the deli TV over there."
"I'm gonna burn the building down," Abdulla quoted the arsonist warning as he was booted from the store.
Soon, the furious man came back to carry out his twisted revenge, according to the newspaper.
Mangal Faces a Slew of Charges Including Assault and Arson
Firefighters arrived to the deli within three minutes after being called Sunday at 7:53 a.m. The rapid response allowed Firefighters to quickly bring the incident under control and provide medical treatment for one civilian with non-life-threatening injuries.
"Fortunately, there was no loss of life here," said Nigro in a statement. "The investigative work from the Explosives and Arson Task Force comprised of our Fire Marshals, the NYPD, and ATF, led to the timely arrest of this suspect who threatened the safety of our communities by using such a cruel and destructive device."
"FDNY will continue to work alongside local, state and federal partners to bring to justice those who use fire as a weapon against New Yorkers," Nigro added.
Mangal is charged with arson, assault, reckless endangerment, criminal possession of a weapon, and criminal mischief. The case will be prosecuted by the Brooklyn District Attorney's Office.