By Ashley Thompson
Wanda Macumber says going to work at Crossroads Restaurant in Garlands Crossing is a lot harder than it used to be.
At 8:30 p.m. Sept. 2, Macumber was three minutes into her shift as a cook at the down-home eatery when a masked man walked into the restaurant, pointed what appeared to be a high-powered rifle at one of her colleagues and demanded she hand over all her money.
“The guy ran down to the bar; he ran past the kitchen door with the mask on and we thought it was a joke,” she recalled.
It didn’t take long for Macumber to realize that no one was laughing. She remembers hearing a co-worker yell that there was a man robbing the place with a gun.
“It turned out to be a pellet gun, but a gun to me is a gun. I didn’t want to die,” Macumber said.
Fred Schofield, the owner of Crossroads Restaurant, says the husband of the waitress working the bar happened to be on site when the man swung the lounge door open and pointed the weapon at her.
“(He) knew it was a pellet gun because (the man) really wasn’t handling it the way you would handle a high-powered rifle,” Schofield said.
The woman’s husband, along with two other bar patrons, pounced on the robber when he turned to leave the building, said Schofield. They managed to keep him subdued for about 10 minutes, until RCMP arrived on the scene.
The investigating officer assigned to the case, Const. Kenda Sutherland, says the accused has remained in police custody since that evening.
Schofield is relieved no one was physically harmed during the attempted robbery, but he suspects this experience will have long-lasting effects on his employees.
“The girls are walking on eggshells… they’re nervous now. That’s the sad part of it. You just slam a door now and they jump. It was not a fun thing to go through,” Schofield said.
“All that and he never got a nickel.”
Michael Lawrence, 36, of Windsor, stands charged with robbery with a firearm, wearing a disguise while committing a crime and using an imitation firearm. He was expected to appear in Windsor provincial court Sept. 14.