McDonald’s customer says employee threatened her with gun

Published: Apr. 27, 2023 at 6:50 AM EDT
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE/Gray News) - A McDonald’s customer says a drive-thru employee at a Louisiana location threatened her with a gun after a dispute over a frappé.

Nicole Walker says she got much more than she bargained for during a stop at McDonald’s last month. She called the Fox 8 Defenders after she says a trip through the drive-thru lane at a location in Kenner, Louisiana, still has her on edge.

“We could have been dead, and nobody would have been able to tell our story,” Walker said.

Walker says she went through the drive-thru with her nephew and grandson in the car on March 16. She says they ordered and paid for a Happy Meal and a frappé.

“When we got up there, it was like a confrontation between the employees because they didn’t want to make the frappé,” she said. “They gave us the Happy Meal, but they were still thinking about who would make the frappé.”

Walker says she waited patiently, but after several minutes, she became upset and asked for her money back for the unmade beverage.

“They were still arguing and fussing,” she said. “So, by the time the young man came, he said, ‘Give us our... food because we are not giving you a refund.’”

Walker again demanded a refund for the frappé. She said an employee, later identified by police as 21-year-old Troy Washington, came back to the drive-thru window and threw the money into her car.

“So, when he threw the money into the car, I probably got upset,” Walker said. “I said, ‘Look, this is not right what you’re doing.’ So, he raised up his shirt and showed me that he had a gun on him. He was moving it around to bring it up.”

She says she was terrified.

“I’m jittery. I’m shaking because I’m thinking that me, my grandbaby and nephew are in this car. We just came to get a Happy Meal, and we’re about to lose our life because nobody wants to make a frappé,” she said.

Walker says she told her nephew to pull off, and they parked in front of McDonald’s and called police.

“To her credit, she de-escalated the situation by simply moving on and calling 911. It’s what we ask people to do in that sort of situation,” Kenner Police Chief Keith Conley said. “It’s good to have the presence of mind to realize, ‘Hey, this could go bad quickly.’”

Conley says his officers arrived within three minutes and got a description of the suspected employee before arresting him.

“You never know what’s going through somebody’s mind in this world today,” Conley said.

According to the police report, the arresting officer asked Washington where the gun was. The suspect told the officer it was “near the apple pies.”

“He advised the officers where he put the gun, so they were able to recover the gun and make the arrest,” Conley said.

The officers say they also found a small amount of marijuana on Washington and booked him with simple assault and drug possession.

Walker is still shaken by the incident.

“What if I wouldn’t have called the police and I would have left?” Walker asked. “The next person’s life would have been in danger.”

Police said they were doing a background check on the gun to determine if it was stolen or used in any other crimes.

Fox 8 asked McDonald’s for a comment on the incident but received no response.

If you have a consumer complaint you’d like us to look into, call the Fox 8 Defenders, staffed with volunteers from the National Council of Jewish Women, at 1-877-670-6397. Or click here to fill out our online complaint form, which is the easiest way to reach us.