A bar patron who flooded the Sloppy Tuna in Montauk early Friday after he allegedly intentionally broke an overhead fire-sprinkler pipe, is facing a felony criminal mischief charge after causing extensive damage that forced the Montauk hotspot to briefly close.
Jacob Randall, 21, a tall, powerfully built senior at the State University of New York Albany, had been warned twice by the bar's security personnel to stay off the overhead pipes, Rob Anderson, the Sloppy Tuna's assistant general manager, said Saturday. Not paying them any mind, Mr. Anderson said, “He scoped out the pipes.”
Again, Mr. Randall grabbed onto a pipe, hanging from it by one arm. “Two of his boys took a picture of him flipping the bird,” Mr. Anderson said. After the photo was taken, Mr. Randall walked to the thinnest portion of pipe he could find, reached up, and broke it with his bare hands, flooding the bar, and setting off a fire alarm, Mr. Anderson said.
“The fire department called,” Abby Monahan, the club’s general manager, said. Ms. Monahan told the dispatcher what happened.
What Mr. Randall did not know when he posed, hanging from the pipe and making an obscene gesture, was that his two friends with him were not the only ones taking his picture. Sloppy Tuna has an extensive surveillance-camera system.
Police arrived, responding to the fire alarm, and were shown the video of Mr. Randall and his friends, Mr. Anderson said.
Within an hour of the incident, police had taken Mr. Randall into custody, charging him with felony criminal mischief. The charge is a felony when a person intentionally damages property, causing a loss of $250 or more.
“We’re still trying to calculate the extent of the damage,” Ms. Monahan said. Not only will the water-warped floor need to be repaired, the bar, which always has a long line to get into, even well after midnight, lost substantial revenue by being forced to close, the managers said.
Mr. Randall, who lives in Tannersville, N.Y., was arraigned Friday morning in front of East Hampton Town Justice Lisa Rana, who set bail at $400. Mr. Randall’s girlfriend was in the courtroom, and posted the bail, setting him free. Mr. Randall will have to return for date on the East Hampton Court’s criminal calendar.