With Orlando’s horrible attack fresh in everyone’s minds, people at Zabar’s got an unwelcome surprise Tuesday morning when a customer managed to shoot himself while ordering a bagel. Police say the man, Louis Lester Anderson, came in during the morning rush, ordered a toasted bagel and coffee, adjusted his waistband, and then — kapow — accidentally discharged the handgun tucked into his pants. The round went all the way through his lower leg. Witnesses say he fled the store in a trail of blood and must have hailed a cab to Mt. Sinai Roosevelt Hospital, where cops later found and arrested him.
Anderson is apparently homeless and has nine prior arrests. He tells police he found the gun while digging though a trash bin near the Lincoln Tunnel. Owner Saul Zabar called the incident “very unusual,” and the situation kept Zabar’s cordoned off for the better part of three hours. Beyond being inconvenienced, many customers told reporters they were rattled by the sound of a gunshot. (“No one is safe anymore,” one told the Times. “Nothing is sacred anymore.” Another observer, per the Daily News: “This is happening all over. It never happened at Zabar’s before. Never!”) They all seem to have stuck around for their schmears, though. “People were flying in here before I could even get in the door,” said a guy who waited out the police tape. “We’re New Yorkers — we have to have our Zabar’s.”