Man shot coming out of bathroom at Wendy's
Customer shot in fast-food robbery
Man hit as he emerged from Wendy's bathroom
By JOSHUA STEWART, Staff Writer
A customer who came out of the bathroom at a Wendy's in Glen Burnie during a robbery yesterday morning was shot several times in the face by two masked men.
The men, armed with a black small-caliber pistol and a shotgun, had just emptied the cash register and were walking to the door at the restaurant across Ritchie Highway from Marley Station when they ran into the unsuspecting customer.
A fight followed and the customer was shot several times, county police said. According to witnesses, the 37-year-old man, whose name police haven't released, ran out of the shop after being shot.
Police were called to the restaurant at 7905 Ritchie Highway at 11:15 a.m. When paramedics arrived, the man was talking as he was sent by ambulance to the Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore. Police said he was expected to be released this morning.
Officers are looking for a Hispanic man armed with a shotgun and a black man armed with a handgun in connection with the robbery and shooting.
A witness who spoke on condition of anonymity said that when the robbers entered the restaurant, they made everybody get down on the floor.
"They said: 'Faces on the ground! Kiss the floor,' " the witness said.
He said he and the clerk behind the counter initially didn't understand what was happening and thought somebody was just fooling around.
"The girl up front, she thought he was joking. She said, 'Can we help you?' (One robber) said, 'You're getting robbed.' "
The heist went smoothly and without resistance until the robbers tried to leave, according to witnesses. On their way out they were confronted by the man who was in the bathroom during the holdup.
After the shooting, the gunmen got into a minivan that was later found abandoned on Robin Road, just a few blocks away.
Police traced the vehicle and learned that it was reported stolen in Prince George's County, said Lt. David Waltemeyer, a police spokesman.
After the robbers ditched the van they got into a second minivan, possibly tan, and drove off, witnesses told police. A third person could have been driving the second vehicle, Lt. Waltemeyer said.
"Most likely it was sitting there waiting," he said.
Yesterday, police had taped off entrances to the restaurant. A yellow safety cone held open one of the side doors, allowing views of turned-over chairs and officers interviewing employees.
Customers from a nearby pharmacy briefly stopped while entering and leaving the store, watching police work. One investigator combed the restaurant's back lot while others documented the scene, marking evidence with placards.
There were several shell casings spread along the floor, Lt. Waltemeyer said.
Erin Lassen, spokesman for the owner of the Wendy's, said there had never been a violent crime at the store before yesterday's shooting. She said she didn't know exactly how many employees were there during the robbery, but none of them was hurt.
"It was lunchtime. We probably would have had more staff than any other time of the day," she said.
Police said about six customers were there at the time, and investigators were in the process of interviewing them.
The timing of the robbery, the busy lunch hour, was unusual, Lt. Waltemeyer said.
Ms. Lassen said the restaurant re-opened today.
Sometimes A Man Has To Fight...
I'm not getting on the floor, unless it's to get a better shot from cover.
The simple life of retirement is getting less simple and more dangerous...
I will NOT let myself be put into the 'execution position'...if I'm going to die, I won't be going alone...
Stay armed...stay alert...stay safe!