Police nab 2nd suspect in Hymie's holdup

John Leroy Moore Jr.
John Leroy Moore Jr.
Posted: August 24, 2012

Police in Lower Merion have arrested a second suspect in connection with an armed holdup last month that terrorized 19 people at a popular Main Line deli.

The suspect was identified by police as John Leroy Moore, Jr., 34, of the 5600 block of Nelson Street, in the Germantown section of Philadelphia.

He joins Michael S. Schaefer, 40, also of Philadelphia, as part of a four-man team that police believe burst into Hymie's Restaurant in Merion at 9:03 p.m. on July 14 and forced patron and employees to lie on the floor where they were robbed at gunpoint.

The men, three of whom were armed, seized about $3,500 in cash, two wallets and several cell phones before they were scared off by a noise in the rear parking lot, according to court testimony.

Schaefer was arrested soon after the robbery, and charged with robbery, conspiracy and weapons offenses. He was bound over for trial on the charges during a preliminary hearing Aug. 8.

On Tuesday, police charged Moore with robbery and related offenses. He was being held at the Montgomery County Correctional Facility after an arraignment when he could not post $50,000 in cash bail.

Moore's preliminary hearing is set for Tuesday at 11 a.m. in Abington, according to a statement issued by Lower Merion police.

It was not immediately clear how the two suspects knew one another, or whether Schaefer led investigators to Moore.

According to testimony and surveillance videotape shown at Schaefer's preliminary hearing, the four men dressed in dark clothing with masks or cloth draped over their faces, came in through the back door of the eatery.

They forced 12 employees and seven patrons to the front of the deli. One man wielding a silver handgun urged manager Lenny Silow, 55, to open the safe.

When Silow explained it could not be opened, the robber directed him to open the cash register.

"Hurry up, come on, or I'll shoot you," Silow quoted the robber as saying in court testimony.

The men fled before Silow could hand over the money in the register. No one was hurt, other than being shaken up. "I was kind of numb," Silow testified in court.

Police found Schaefer through a car parked in a nearby lot that was registered to him. In the back was a sawed-off shotgun, according to court testimony.

Also found in the Merion neighborhood were latex gloves, boxes of candy taken from the deli, a .25-caliber handgun and various items of clothing.

Contact Bonnie L. Cook at 610-313-8232 or bcook@phillynews.com. Read her MontCo Memo blog at philly.com.

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