Vincent's Italian Restaurant on St. Charles Avenue was robbed at gunpoint late Sunday night, according to New Orleans police.
Shortly before midnight, a man wearing a face mask and gloves walked into the popular restaurant in the 7800 block of St. Charles Avenue. He forced employees in the back of the restaurant to come to the front and told two cashiers to put money in a bag, the New Orleans Police Department said in a preliminary offense log.
The cashiers complied, and the man fled the restaurant.
Police said five people – three men, ages 42, 40 and 19, and two women, ages 46 and 37 – were inside the restaurant at the time of the robbery.
Vincent Catalanotto of Vincent's restaurant said he was relieved nobody was hurt as a result of the stick-up, and he didn't anticipate any disruption in the business' operations.
"We're just trying to look at this as a freak incident," Catalanotto said.
The robbery occurred hours after Vincent's Godfather po-boy won recognition as best pork sandwich at the Oak Street Po-Boy Festival on Sunday.
Earlier Sunday, police reported one other armed robbery and an attempted armed robbery.
Around 11:25 a.m., a 49-year-old woman and her daughter were walking in the 1200 block of Marigny Street when a 14-year-old male approached them with his hands in his shirt, as if he had a gun, police said. He allegedly told the daughter to drop her phone or “I will bust your head open,” police said.
The mother and daughter fled on foot, and the juvenile was apprehended. He was taken into custody and arrested, police said.
A few hours later, police reported an armed robbery in the 6600 block of Virgilian Street. Two women, ages 27 and 19, were sitting inside a vehicle when a man got into the backseat, police said. He allegedly produced a firearm and pointed it at the two women, demanding cash.
A second man, estimated to be about 19 years old, stood nearby during the robbery, police said. The first man took the victims’ cash and one woman’s driver’s license. Both men then fled northbound on Virgilian Street on foot, police said.
In other cases recently handled by local authorities:
• Four more defendants recently charged in the 2013 slaying of Loomis armored truck driver Hector Trochez pleaded not guilty in New Orleans' federal court on Monday.
The not-guilty pleas of Chukwudi Ofomata, LilBear George, Jeremy Esteves and Curtis Johnson Jr. came a week after an indictment charging them with having a hand in Trochez's deadly stick-up was unsealed. One defendant, Robert Brumfield III, remains at large.
George's girlfriend, Jasmine Theophile, was also charged in the case with obstruction on allegations that she helped her boyfriend destroy a cell phone in a bid to thwart a grand jury investigation. She has pleaded not guilty. Theophile was released on bond, but authorities are holding the other four defendants who have been arraigned without bail.
• Strehle Elementary School in Avondale will reopen Tuesday after a fire in the main electrical panel on campus forced its closure Monday, officials said. Meanwhile, Collins Elementary will reopen Tuesday after a loss of power on Monday forced students to take classes at Marrero Middle School's campus.
• New Orleans police on Monday are seeking to arrest Tyrell Woods, 18, on allegations that he shot bullets at a home on Southlawn Boulevard in Algiers.
• Police said a 22-year-old woman in the 10200 block of South I-10 Service Road in New Orleans East at 7:35 a.m. Sunday reported being raped by two men whom she did not know.
• A car was knocked onto its side and into the front of a building after colliding with another vehicle at the corner of North Rampart and St. Ann streets in the French Quarter about 11:10 a.m. It was unclear whether any serious injuries were reported.