NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — “That was horrible, that was the first time someone actually took the drawer,” said Jerry Katz.
Jerry Katz and his employees have been plagued by gun violence at his New Haven business, Jerry’s Shell and food mart on Willow street.
“I’ve had some pretty bad armed robberies over the years – employees tied up and thrown into the cooler,” said Katz.
Katz often spends the next morning as a therapist, helping his workers recover from the emotional toll.
“All of a sudden someone walks in, putting a gun to your head or your side.
It traumatizes them. I’m very lucky because I have kept most of them over the years, ” said Katz.
The latest was just a few weeks ago, Seth Naqshband had a gun pointed at him during an armed robbery.
“I was like scared at the moment because this guy it seemed like he was on something,” said Naqshband.
Katz has gone to great lengths in the name of safety, cameras outside, inside and on the side street.
All and all, sixteen cameras covering every possible angle.
Six more are being installed to capture the street and getaway cars.
Windows were replaced by bulletproof glass, and the door can lock in a matter of seconds with the push of a button.
“It gets around, you don’t want to rob Jerry’s shell,” said Katz.
He has spent over 100-thousand dollars in security upgrades.
“Its a nightmare to me but I really feel that over the years I’ve been able to deter a lot of the robberies – quite a few of them have been caught – there’s been times where I have had to bring my camera system to the court,” said Katz.
In way, its his own form of gun control.
He holds out hope, more help could be coming.
I just hope that I can last another few years – that way hopefully there will be a little more gun legislation that will be oases which can help a store like Jerry’s shell,” said Katz.