Update 12:03 a.m. EST Nov. 24: Police arrested Lloyd Edward Johnson, 55, on a probable cause second-degree assault charge in the wake of the incident involving Somali teens at a McDonald’s in Eden Prairie, WCCO reported. Johnson, who is from Eden Prairie, is being held at the Hennepin County Jail in downtown Minneapolis.
Original report: A Somali teenager said a man waved a handgun at her and her friends after she confronted him at a McDonald’s in Minnesota after an alleged ethnic slight, the Star Tribune reported.
The incident, which occurred at the fast-food restaurant in Eden Prairie, is being investigated by police, WCCO reported.
Jihan Abdullahi, 17, said she was trying to pay for her order with an app on her smartphone but the clerk was having trouble processing the order, the Star Tribune reported.
“Once we gave up on paying, we just canceled the order,” Abdullahi told the newspaper. “And as (we) are walking away, the man says under his breath, ‘You were paying with EBT (electronic benefit transfer); that’s why it didn’t work.’”
Abdullahi said she asked the man, “‘Just because I’m black you think my friends and I live under EBT?’ And he said, ‘Yes.’”
In a 45-second video that has been shown on Twitter, the teens are yelling at the man, who was shoved near the door to the restaurant. As the man stumbled backward, the teens backed away and several customers shouted that the man had a gun, although it is unclear in the video if a weapon was brandished.
A police report said the man allegedly pulled the firearm from his waistband, the Star Tribune reported.
A manager then stepped in and yelled, “I want everyone out of my store, now,” according to the video. Another customer then came to the aid of the teens, telling the manager to call the police, WCCO reported.
Paul Ostergaard, the owner and operator of the Eden Prairie McDonald’s, released a statement Tuesday, the television station reported. Ostergaard said he is taking the incident seriously and is working with police.
“Nothing is more important than the safety and security of our customers and employees,” Ostergaard said in his statement.
In a statement, Eden Prairie city officials said police are investigating whether a crime was committed, the Star Tribune reported.
“Officers obtained video evidence and witness statements from the scene, and police are investigating the circumstances surrounding the incident to determine if a crime was committed,” the statement said.
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