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Cops probe Merrick video game store heist

Robbers crashed a midnight debut of the football video game Madden NFL 13 at a store in Merrick, tying up workers once customers left and fleeing with cash, games and consoles, according to authorities and the store.

The two robbers, one armed with a handgun, forced two workers to lie behind the counter and crawl to a back room, where they bound them with cables and tape, police said.

The victims freed themselves and called police, but the robbers were already gone, fleeing through a rear door near Henry Street, police said.

The robbery happened Tuesdayat about 12:45 a.m. at the GameStop video game store at 2212 Sunrise Hwy.

A store manager, who did not want to be named because she wasn't authorized to speak, said Tuesday that the robbery happened after customers left the event for Madden NFL 13. The game is the latest from EA Sports in the National Football League video game franchise named for John Madden, the former Super Bowl-winning coach of the Oakland Raiders.

A GameStop district manager did not return a call.

Neither police nor the store manager would detail what was taken.

A just-hired security guard stood sentry at the GameStop store Tuesday as a long line of young men -- some accompanied by their parents -- picked up Madden NFL 13.

No injuries were reported.

The employees who were robbed are taking time off. "It's unnerving," the manager said.

-- With Gary Dymski

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