Armed robbers who heisted $9,000 from a man after a wild caught-on-video car chase on the Upper East Side “specifically targeted” their victim because they knew he had cash, a police official said Wednesday.
The victim — who handed over the bag of cash when the Saturday afternoon chase came to an end on Second Ave. near E. 91st St. — told investigators he had the money because his brothers are bodega owners who are buying cars, said NYPD Chief of Detectives James Essig.
“They like to have cash on them in case they see a car they like,” Essig said. “He was specifically targeted. It wasn’t a random attack.”
The incident began when the robbers, driving a black Mercedes reported stolen in Suffolk County, bumped the victim’s car from behind, said the chief of detectives.
When the victim’s Toyota RAV4 pulled over after the bump, the suspects told him to get out “to view the damage.”
The victim said he would call 911, instead — at which point, one of the robbers pulled a gun, according to Essig.
“The victim then stepped on the gas and fled toward Second Ave.,” he said. “The [robbers’] vehicle pursued him south on Second Ave., crashing into him several times.”
Video taken by a bystander shows the cars speeding the wrong way north on Second Ave.
The RAV4 swung around at E. 92d St., briefly mounted the sidewalk and headed south on Second Ave. before coming to rest near a hydrant on the west side of the avenue, near E. 91st St., the video shows.
One of the robbers got out of the Mercedes and banged on the Toyota’s window. After that, the Toyota’s driver got out and handed over the bag of cash.
The scene was about two and a half long blocks from Gracie Mansion, the mayor’s residence.
The robbers sped off, and police found their car a few blocks away, Essig said.
“They are seen hiding under a car and in [a] garage, where they were eventually picked up by what we believe is an Uber,” he said.
They dumped their gun in a trash basket. The weapon was later recovered by investigators, said Essig.
Both suspects remained at large on Wednesday.