On the streets of San Juan, police struggle to rein in crime after Hurricane Maria

MIAMI HERALD – DAVID OVALLE

Hurricane Maria ripped apart daily life in Puerto Rico but it hasn’t brought a halt to the crime that has long plagued the poverty-stricken island.

In the hard-scrabble neighborhood of Rio Piedras, Jessica Rojas was at work this week making sandwiches at a Subway restaurant — a cash-only operation because of the limited power supply — when two young gunmen dressed in black burst through the door demanding money.

Esto es un asalto,” one yelled. “This is a robbery!”

Rojas alerted an off-duty cop working security in a back room. A gunfight erupted. Rojas cowered on the ground as one gunman was gravely wounded and the other escaped. Also wounded in the crossfire: a local prosecutor and his wife who happened to be dining inside.

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