Memorial outside of Pop; Photo: Killthebird.com

The news that the manager of Pop and Pop Burger, Tim Moore, was founded murdered at Pop on Saturday morning shocked co-workers and New Yorkers familiar with Moore's friendly, gracious demeanor. Moore, who managed the two Roy Liebenthal-owned restaurants, besides working at others (Lemon and Cafe Tabac), had been bludgeoned by a fire extinguisher during a robbery. Two employees, coming to work at 11AM, noticed blood on the floor and contacted police who found Moore's body in the basement. Workers sat outside the restaurants, crying and reminiscing Moore, who was universally loved. Liebenthal called him, "the best of the best," in a statement, and the newspapers noted Moore's ability to meet and greet the celebrities, such as Mick Jagger, Madonna, and Venus Williams at Liebenthal's restaurants.

Then on Sunday, police arrested six-month Pop porter Lerome Hilson, a Bronx resident who had been releaed from prison, after serving eight years for burglary, robbery, and weapons chargers. Police said that in the process of interviewing all employees, Hilson claimed he was not there, but then contradicted his statement. Some employees told reporters that there had been some robberies lately; those are being investigated for any possible links to Hilson.

This is very sad news. Gothamist has enjoyed a few of Liebenthal's restaurants, including Pop, and considering how close knit many restaurants need to be in order to remain successful, we can't imagine how devastating this must be for everyone there. Our sympathies go out to the Moore family and Pop employees and friends. Moore's mother in Georgia told reporters, "New York was his favorite place. He loved the excitement. Tim had every chance to move here, but he would not leave New York. He told me they had cleaned up the place and the police were everywhere. He said, 'Mom, you don't even have to worry about Times Square.' I never dreamed I'd have to worry about the restaurant he was in."

A memorial service for Moore will be held at 3 p.m. Wednesday at Grace Church at 802 Broadway. And Kill the Bird took pictures of the makeshift memorial outside of Pop.