A Few Store Windows Were Smashed on the UWS, Though Much of the Neighborhood Has Been Spared from Looting

Pottery Barn boarded up windows on Monday night. Photo by Nancy Ross.

While looting has occurred in various parts of New York in recent days, it appears to be happening only sporadically — if at all — on the Upper West Side.

Optyx at 87th Street and Broadway was broken into. “Spoke to store owner sweeping glass. Many items were stolen,” wrote Lori, the local resident who sent in the photo below.

But it doesn’t appear that police are classifying the burglary as looting. The commander of the 24th precinct, which covers 86th to 110th Street tells us there have not been any reports of looting in the neighborhood, though there were two burglaries.

Photo by Nancy Ross.

“So far there has been no looting in the confines of the 24th Precinct,” wrote Deputy Inspector Naoki Yaguchi. “We have taken 2 commercial burglaries in the last 2 nights in which perpetrators have broken into stores by breaking the front door/front window glass, running in and taking money and other property. But these are stand alone incidents.”

The commander of the 20th precinct did not immediately respond to questions about looting. A few stores in the 20th have had their windows damaged with rocks or other objects, including Zara on 67th and Broadway and Best Buy at 62nd and Broadway. It’s not clear whether items were stolen from the businesses.

Photo by Stephen Harmon.

Photo by Stephen Harmon.

NEWS | 44 comments | permalink
    1. ben says:

      Several stores in the Columbus Square development between 97th and 100th have had their windows boarded up now.

    2. Bill says:

      Amazing how “only sporadic looting” is stated so matter-of-factly. Any looting is an outrage.

      • GoodCopGoodCop says:

        But actually it is sporadic, not really violent, comprehensive, or even very destructive. The window dressings in Zara were untouched. No fires (well, small fire in Verizon store on 52nd.) I’m against violence and property theft. Don’t get me wrong. But this is like disgruntled marchers, moving fast, smashing something, moving on. It’s not really destructive of the neighborhood. It doesn’t even disturb the peace for very long. It’s not good, and I don’t know where this is all going. Very tense and strange times. But don’t pretend like this is really riotous neighborhood wrecking looting, for which I am very thankful.

        • CTLesq says:

          Your justification of this violence is appalling.

          • ML says:

            Your inability to comprehend what s/he’s saying is far more appalling and speaks directly to the disconnect people are marching against. You must be constantly disappointed, with your Perfect World expectations.

          • EricaC says:

            No one is justifying the looting – just trying to describe it accurately. There are places where looting is happening at an appalling level. That is not happening here.

            I am appalled by the looting. I’m also mindful of the fact that those who feel excluded by society also do not feel bound by it.

      • Marigold says:


      • clb says:

        The true outrage is the killing of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery. Listen to Trevor Noah to understand a different point of view https://www.instagram.com/tv/CAyfFnaJbyL/?igshid=1ar8z2dj71oya

        • Beth says:

          Frankly, I don’t see what everyone thinks is so brilliant about what he said. Nowhere does he call the problem out for what it really is: White men use violence to oppress black people. Let’s stop using euphemisms like police and white people. Let’s stop displacing anger at white men on to white women. When you do that you shift blame away and absolve white men of their own responsibility for their actions. Let’s call it for what is is: white men use violence to oppress black people (and other oppressed groups, too). Ignoring this reality is just upholding the white patriarchy.

          • EricaC says:

            Beth, White women are not immune. White women are more than capable of appalling acts. Remember what got Emmet Till killed. Remember who killed Botham Jean. Look at the white women eagerly seeking to run as Republicans to continue this inequity. Look at some of the women on this comment section who are more upset by property damage than systematic loss of life and liberty.

            And plenty of white men are as appalled as you are.

            • Uwsismyhome says:

              Just because people don’t want to feel afraid to go outside or see their neighborhood destroyed by looters being violent and criminals doesn’t mean we think it matters more then lives. For me, my brain honestly can’t handle all the stress of what’s going on and still have room to sit and reflect on what the protests are actually for. It has zero to do with property and everything to do with being afraid of what Is happening.
              Looting and crime doesn’t help the cause at all and a person can care that their neighborhood isn’t destroyed while also still supporting the cause. I walked in with protestors the other day (the peaceful ones), and 100% feel that.

            • Zephyr says:

              And what about Amy Cooper?

          • Debbie Downer says:

            It’s true that behind this is not racial strife but communist revolution. Can we be called crazy for thinking that way now? Even the MSM is leaking info about who’s funding the rioters, mostly far left white groups. They are supported by law firms and even police. My own company is now requiring mandatory racial sensitivity training, starting today. Failure to attend could result in dismissal. We have to worry that this push for a one-party government is funded and fueled by Fortune 500 companies. Blacks and minorities are getting screwed by this more than any of us.

        • UWSHebrew says:

          How about the black people that have been killed by “protestors” in the last few days? Perhaps the most tragic is that of David Dorn, a retired St. Louis police chief who went to guard his friend’s pawn shop. He was killed while attempting to stop a robbery at the store, and his death by the “protestor” is on video. He was 77. Have not heard of Mr. Dorn? THAT’S BECAUSE THE TELEVISION MEDIA REFUSES TO REPORT ON IT.

          • Jen says:

            Yes. This death on its own is horrific. Not much coverage about it. I don’t find it less violent and unjust than George Floyd’s. Every life matters. Do we need a movement for every death to make it count?

            • UWSHebrew says:

              That’s not the point. It just appears that some black lives are more important than others. Like the dozens who are killed every weekend in Chicago. Like this HERO of an American citizen who served his community with honor in the Police Department, only to be gunned down by a mindless criminal. At 77, he could have just stayed indoors, but no, he went to help his friend! It’s disgusting.

      • Marianne says:

        I so agree with you, Bill! Any looting is an outrage – if a window gets smashed and merchandise/ money stolen- why is there a distinction made , “it’s not looting” but a break in- weird. I’m sorry for all the business owners and workers and patrons who now have to wait even longer to do business :-((

    3. S says:

      Unbelievable and completely not necessary. What a shame.

    4. Karen L. Bruno says:

      Nothing to see here folks, just peaceful looting and mayhem..move along!

    5. Tommy says:

      The subject line of this WSR email was right out of 1984. “Peaceful protests, some smashed windows”. : )

    6. L. Braverman says:

      The bar on the first floor of our building, The Gin Mill (81st & Amsterdam), has been boarded up today. I can’t tell you how creepy that feels.

      Idle Speculations:

      Maybe they’re going to engage in some construction (though nothing’s been posted).

      Maybe they’ve gotten reports of a hurricane about to make landfall?


      • Lynne Funk says:

        Stores board up windows if they think they may be vulnerable. This was done at Seohora on Broadway and 72 months ago.

    7. gs says:

      So glad I retired out of the UWS before the rioting started (so sad, I purchased four pairs of glasses from that Optyx right before leaving). And no this is not an inevitable outcome of the tragic death of George Floyd. This is plan old theft, destruction of private property and bodily injury! Looks like NYC is headed back to the bad old days…with Antifa and the good liberals/anarchists of the city leading the way.

      • Hank Aberle says:

        I don’t think an anti-fascist group cares much about looting the latest sneakers or large screen TVs. They’re more interested in fighting with Nazis who would rather gas people then accept them for their culture or skin color. I would think that with four new paIrs of glasses, you would have better vision. You still don’t see so well. Probably it’s a good thing that you left the good liberals on the UWS. Where’d you do, Alabama?

      • EC says:

        It has concerned me all along that the coverage of the protests is going to make people outside the city think we are living in total mayhem, when that is really not the case. I live on the UWS and have friends and family living on both sides of Broadway from the 60s through the low 100s; during the day it’s been 100% safe and exactly the same as always; at night more tense and with some isolated incidents as noted, but nothing that would make me feel it’s time to leave the city (I will say friends in the Union Square and Soho areas might feel differently if they hadn’t already left). Furthermore, many major cities and even some smaller ones are hit with similar or even worse unrest. Don’t count out NYC, the majority of it is still peaceful and safe!

    8. UWSHebrew says:

      Thank you, young men, for giving the UWS the “light touch” of vandalism! So grateful to you all to keeping your actions in the midtown and soho area! Here is the exciting experience from a reporter who witnessed it where he lives with his family!


      • Nevets K says:

        Hello, UWS Hebrew,
        I trust you are well!
        I enjoy and am informed by many of your comments.
        Some I agree with. But fewer recently.
        However, I know for a fact that you were mistaken when you asserted the following about a week ago:
        “So how can I (as a Jew),” you asked, “be a white nationalist? The answer is of course I can’t.”

        Sorry, but you could be. It is neither theoretically nor practically impossible. And how do I know this?
        Because my brother is Jewish and he is a white nationalist (and a Trump supporter too – though this may be coincidental.)
        As any loving, Jewish brother would do, I asked him how this could be possible. (See, UWS Hebrew, our great minds think alike!) He answered, “I don’t know, I’ve always identified more with being WHITE than being Jewish.” Believe me, my brother is virulently racist and believes absolutely that “the white race” is under attack and must defend itself. Without question, he is a white nationalist.
        Now, obviously, that is not the case with you. But the example of my brother irrefutably proves your assertion wrong. It is very possible to be both Jewish and a white nationalist.
        And if I wanted to argue with you, which I don’t, I would say that Steven Miller is one too.
        But we can certainly agree that for a Jew to be a white nationalist is very much beyond the pale. Not to mention disturbing, nauseating, and repugnant.
        Please stay well. And in this difficult moment, I wish you all the continued best.

        • UWSHebrew says:

          Thank you so much for sharing your fairytale with me, I hope it released some kind of stress hormone and you are now relaxed.

          • Nevets K says:

            Not a fairy tale, sir.
            And you have failed to refute my assertion, backed by fact: that it is possible to be a Jew and a white nationalist. You had claimed that such a thing is impossible. It is not.
            Plus your sophomoric comment, beginning with “I hope it released some stress hormone,” is well below your grade level.

            • UWSHebrew says:

              Your “personal” example as well as the propaganda that Mr. Miller is a white nationalist is what I responded to, quite rightly, as a fairytale. I won’t change your mind, as you are lock-step in with the MSM, which is of course, so heavily biased, that it is hardly news, just opinions offered as news. I have no interest in engaging with someone who is not open to what the facts are, and just peddles in the narratives of such great intellectual talking heads like Don Lemon, Brian Stelter, Anderson Cooper, Chris Cuomo, Joy Reid, etc. Goodbye, sir.

          • Nevets K says:

            Personal example is true.
            Fascinating how you respond when you are confronted with the truth that is obviously possible to be a Jew and a white nationalist! You seem to believe that your religious faith is a shield against such outcomes. Now that indeed is a fairytale!

        • Ted says:

          Your brother is unfortunately going to find out really quick that white supremacists care a whole lot more about his being Jewish than they do his skin color. Let’s just say the Aryan Brotherhood and their ilk are none to keen on The Chosen.

    9. NY Native says:

      The opportunistic looters are not the protestors that I was with today. The protestors aren’t rioters and there was zero mayhem. It was an energetic, peaceful group. The protest leader near me was leading us in applauding the bus drivers and other essential workers that we passed. New Yorkers were leaning out of their windows to cheer for the protestors, who cheered and waved back. I was so moved by the people of this great city.

    10. Brie Hoffman says:

      Keep voting those Democrats in UWS!

    11. UWSmom says:

      My drivers license is up for renewal and requires an eye exam. I will see if I can get that at OPTYX, in support!

    12. Angry@UWS says:

      When has peaceful protest ever truly incited change and let’s not forget, black people have tried to be heard using their inside voices and no one seems to be listening. I’m not proactively for looting or violence but where was this outcry when George Floyd was murdered or Breonna Taylor or countless others. Destruction of property is an outrage but needless and unjustifiable loss of (black) life is a quick read over morning coffee. Privilege has its perks, one being the luxury of being able to stand up for the smashed window as the biggest priority here because you don’t have to worry about being on the wrong side of the color coin at the most opportune time (i.e., while driving, while sleeping, while walking, while living….)

    13. Refugee says:

      A few UWS citizens are turning into spying Bolsheviks.
      Most people I know would love to have your problems

    14. Jen says:

      With all due respect, please change the title of this article. It could be easily interpreted that looting and violence are condoned given the circumstances.

    15. Robert says:

      I was marching last night (Tuesday). I saw nothing destructive. Admittedly I only participated for a mile and was distracted by the site of a latrine. I am in my 70s and thought the people in my vicinity were committed and not violent. One more thing. All deaths are sad. The gentleman killed by a looter defending his friend’s store is a tragedy. The issue in Mr. Floyd’s death is that it was done under the auspices of government power, by those we allow to have guns – to protect us.

    16. julia says:

      I understand why, but am no less disappointed !

    17. Mario Sanchez says:

      As I see here in Europe, avoid white kids in expensive looking dark clothing. They will get in your face and spur on a violent encounter, and if one doesn’t work, they will surround you. The black migrants are not the problem. They jump in and push aside the white kids who are the brunt of the problem: Everyone, including the media, knows who’s behind this: It’s young white upper-class “hipster” communists funded by big corporations and billionaires who do not want to see Joe the Plumber succeed.