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When the words “wireless caller” appear on the caller ID at Pizza Boli’s in Brookland, general manager Nadeem Ali gets suspicious. He has to. All summer long, his deliverymen have been set up by muggers who call in orders on cell phones and proceed to ambush the drivers at the delivery point.
During the most recent attack in early September, he says, three men mugged a driver and an employee in training. “They just hit him,” Ali says of the driver. “He was bleeding from the head.”
According to Ali, the attackers stole $75 worth of pizza and soda, and robbed the men of all the cash in their wallets. The driver went home and never came back to work, Ali says.
A few days later, at the urging of the police, Ali banned cell phone orders from local residences. He makes exceptions for businesses and colleges. “It’s hard to track the cell phones,” Ali says, and “sometimes a cell phone is stolen.”
Ali says his customers have had mixed reactions. “Some people understand. Some people don’t,” he says. Either way, “it’s not worth taking the risk.”