By Robert Pozarycki
Armed with a hammer, a man terrorized workers at a Flushing spa last week after his request for a refund was rebuffed, according to authorities.
Law enforcement sources said the trouble began Nov. 29 at 10:35 p.m. inside the Tao Spa Bodywork, located at 135-20 40th Road.
During his visit, police said the perpetrator demanded a refund from a 55-year-old female worker. When she refused, he pulled out a hammer and again demanded money.
Cops said the suspect then grabbed the worker by the hair, dragged her out to the waiting area and punched her in the face. The worker then fled to a back room, and three other female employees confronted the enraged customer.
According to authorities, the hammer-wielding man grabbed one of the workers, a 56-year-old woman, by the throat and shoved her against the wall. He then threatened the other employees with the hammer, prompting one of the workers to hand over $40 to the suspect, hoping that he would finally leave.
The suspect took the money, but that still wasn’t enough for him, police said.
Cops noted that the perpetrator walked over to the counter and smashed open a piggy bank that was there. He grabbed some of the coins and cash from the destroyed bank before exiting the spa and heading eastbound on 40th Road.
Officers from the 109th Precinct responded to the reported robbery. Paramedics treated the injured workers at the scene.
On Dec. 1, the NYPD released video footage of the perpetrator, who’s described as a Hispanic man with black hair between 20 and 30 years of age, standing about 5 feet, 6 inches tall and weighing 160 pounds. He was last seen wearing a gray hooded coat, dark colored jeans and tan work boots while carrying a light-colored backpack.
The video shows the suspect punching one worker, menacing another and smashing the piggy bank on the counter.
Anyone with information regarding his whereabouts can call Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS (for Spanish, dial 888-57-PISTA), visit the Crime Stoppers website, send a direct message to the Crime Stoppers Twitter page (@NYPDTips) or send a text message to 274637 (CRIMES), then enter TIP577. All calls and messages are kept confidential.