The head of a security firm hired to protect a Philadelphia gas station amid a surge in violent crime gave a warning to criminals during a Tuesday evening Fox News appearance, saying he will “use force” and “take action” if necessary.
Neil Patel, the owner of a Karco gas station, hired the security firm after an ATM machine was stolen. The guards are heavily armed, carrying AR-15 rifles and shotguns while on duty at the station.
“In the beginning it wasn’t that way, a lot of people didn’t understand why we were here and then the following week when people realized what happened here, a lot of people got on board and they say ‘hey, I love coming here now,’” Chief Andre Boyer of Pennsylvania S.I.T.E. told Fox News host Jesse Watters. “This should have been done – this should be done throughout the city. In fact, one lady actually she works for Wawa, she is a manager. She said, ‘we need you at Wawa.’”
“Let me explain something to you about Pennsylvania S.I.T.E. We are not security, we’re Pennsylvania state agents. We are different than security,” Boyer said. “Security guards, those are the guys that stand at the door or stand around and walk through the mall. When something goes down, they pick up their cell phones and call 911. That’s not going to happen with us.”
Crime skyrocketed in Philadelphia, with the city on a pace to set records, Axios reported in September. The Pennsylvania House of Representatives voted to impeach Philadelphia district attorney Larry Krasner in November, claiming his policies led to the surge in violent crime, including a 60% increase in robberies using firearms, according to a September report by Axios.
“We take action,” Boyle told Watters. “We can make arrests, and that’s what’s going to happen if that person with my client commits a crime. He is – he or she is going to get arrested. And if I have to use force, I will use force.”