Ridge Hill department store attack: 2 former workers arrested

Three men fled with an unknown amount of Three men fled with an unknown amount of property after an early-morning robbery at the Lord & Taylor store at the Ridge Hill Shopping Center in Yonkers. (Feb. 13, 2013) Photo Credit: News12

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Yonkers police on Thursday arrested two former employees of the Lord & Taylor at Ridge Hill Shopping Center in an attempted armed robbery at the store that resulted in a worker being assaulted by the masked gunmen, police said.

Yonkers detectives charged Julian McClendon, 21, of Mount Vernon, and Michael Montes, 22, of Yonkers, in the Wednesday early-morning attack, Yonkers police Det. Lt. Patrick McCormack said.

Police are looking for a third suspect.

The men were charged with first-degree robbery, a felony, and for auto theft, as they failed to take anything from the store during the 6:15 a.m. incident, McCormack said.

The suspects were after cash kept in a locked room, police told News12, but they never gained access.

More charges could be filed as the investigation continues, according to McCormack.

"This is a case where video was really helpful," he said. "That entire area has good security cameras."

Police said the three men were wearing dark clothing and masks and carrying weapons as they entered the store before it opened. Only a handful of employees and cleaning staff were in the store at the time, cops told News12, and apparently none of the employees had access to the so-called "money room."

The suspects assaulted a 21-year-old male employee who suffered cuts and bruises, police said. The suspects then held at gunpoint other employees arriving for work.

"When they couldn't get into that cash room the suspects started smashing jewelry counters," McCormack told News12.

But the suspects didn't get away with any valuables and fled, fearing they'd be caught, according to police.

They grabbed one employee's car keys and fled in that person's vehicle, police said. The car has since been recovered.

Montes and McClendon were held at the Yonkers City Jail as they awaited arraignment Thursday in Yonkers City Court.

Lawyers for the two suspects could not be located.

A spokeswoman for Ridge Hill thanked the Yonkers police for the quick apprehension of two suspects.

"We are also very pleased that our effective security camera system was able to help the police apprehend the suspects," spokeswoman Laura Dolan said in a statement.

With Nik Bonopartis

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