By Claire Byun
Just a few days after the popular Mid-City bar Twelve Mile Limit was robbed by two men with an “assault-style rifle,” the bar and staff are carrying on.
Cole Newton, owner of Twelve Mile Limit, said his staff is a little shaken up but the community response to the incident has only reinforced his love for the people of New Orleans.
The bar has dealt with a break in once before, about three or four years ago, by a former employee while the bar was closed, Newton said. Newton has also experienced the occasional theft by patrons – including 30 eggs and a stuffed goat – but there’s never been an armed robbery before.
“This is the first time that something like this has happened when the bar was open,” Newton said.
Around 12:45 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 28, two unknown men entered the bar in the 500 block of South Telemachus Street, one carrying an “assault-style rifle,” according to the initial NOPD report. The other intruder collected the money, and both then left on Baudin Street toward South Jefferson Davis Parkway, the report states.
The bar is working to compensate the staff for the lost tips, Newton said.
Newton wasn’t at the bar during the robbery, but said he’s relieved nobody was injured and proud of how the staff handled the situation. The staff who were at the bar at the time – particularly those behind the bar – were a little more shaken up, “as you might expect,” Newton said.
Twelve Mile’s robbery was one of six armed robberies around the New Orleans Police Department’s First District this week, according to police statistics. There’s been a total of 14 armed robberies around Mid-City this year so far, which has lead Sgt. Gary Lewis to spread some of his officers to “problem areas,” he said Tuesday afternoon.
Detectives are still reviewing surveillance camera footage from Twelve Mile Limit’s robbery, and Lewis said he’ll distribute the most clear still of the suspects as soon as possible.
“We’re really optimistic that we’ll solve it,” Lewis said.
Newton said he’s planning to fix the buzzer system which stopped working when the bar replaced the front door and probably add another security camera. Staff will also make sure nobody is left alone while closing the bar, he said.
No more details about the robbery were available, but anyone with information is urged to call the NOPD First District station at 658-6010 to speak to a detective, or CrimeStoppers at 822-1111 to leave an anonymous tip that could be eligible for a cash reward.
Newton posted an update on the bar’s Facebook page after the armed robbery, thanking the community for their support and answering a few questions posed by patrons. As for how the community can help, Newton just asks anyone to stop in, grab a drink, and say hello.
“It never ceases to amaze me how New Orleans rallies around people and businesses after incidents like these,” Newton said. “This is a great city, Mid-City is a great neighborhood, and if anything the response has only reinforced those feelings. “