On April 10, 1922 a gaggle of gunmen stopped in at Benjamin Sandberg’s fur coat store at 1817 Madison Ave. and helped themselves to $28,000 worth of furs. Not having any shooting irons of their own Sandberg and his three associates stood idly by as the inventory was loaded into a car and carried off.
But the joke was on the bandits for they were magic pelts and eighty-eight years ago tonight there was a full moon and the animals came back to life and ate…no, actually what happened was that detectives got the low down on the mob and four of them went to the apartment the desperados shared.
The arrests were rather simple. One detective knocked on the door and one of the yeggs answered it. When the door was opened the other three detectives rushed in with guns drawn. Four guys and two girls were in the apartment and lined up against the wall. While two detectives kept the bandidos covered the other two searched the place and found two guns under the bed, two in the dumb waiter and two in a frying pan out on the fire escape.
While discovering the last two guns a detective saw a red car pull up and four smartly dressed fellers get out and enter the apartment building. Moments later the doorbell rang. A couple of armed detectives opened the door and immediately arrested the new comers.
Mack Sennett bought the rights to what happened next. The whole entourage entered the buildings elevator and went to the first floor but since there was so many of them the cable snapped and they crashed into the basement. Nobody was hurt but they were trapped for quarter of an hour until the landlord could get them out.