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Storm provides cover for marauders

It was the perfect storm for crime.

Last week’s nor’easter not only downed trees and caused flooding all over the borough, it also led to a number of crimes in Dyker Heights that Deputy Inspector Eric Rodriguez of the 68th Precinct doesn’t think would have happened otherwise.

Rodriguez, the precinct commander, spoke about the trio of robberies committed while the storm was at its height, calling the incidents “crimes of opportunity.”

“Two guys got robbed at gunpoint,” Rodriguez said, speaking to members of the 68th Precinct Community Council who met at the stationhouse, 333 65th Street. “One kid got shot, from 1 am and 4 am, on Sunday. We’re investigating that, and we’ll make sure we get those guys.”

“That was just poor timing,” he contended, noting that the precinct was already handling an abundance of storm-related calls and coping with streets impeded by downed trees, some tangled in power lines. “These guys must have known, and they took an opportunity.”

Two of the robberies, including the one in which one person was shot, were committed by the same group of thugs, who made off with a backpack containing personal items from one victim and the contents of the pockets of another, police said. The shooting victim was hit in the hand and taken to Lutheran Medical Center for treatment.

In the third robbery, the victim was pistol-whipped and robbed of $40, according to police.

Even with the robberies that occurred during the storm, the precinct is down 21 percent in robberies for the year as of March 21, said Rodriguez.

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