Burger King manager avoids workplace violence with quick thinkin - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Burger King manager avoids workplace violence with quick thinking

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Burger King on Cheyenne and Rainbow (FOX5). Burger King on Cheyenne and Rainbow (FOX5).
LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -

On Wednesday, it was business as usual at the Burger King near West Cheyenne and Rainbow Boulevard, but the night before employees averted a crisis.

According to Metro police Lt. David Gordon, shortly before 8:30 p.m., a 30-year-old man, identified as Steven Ramirez, walked into the fast food restaurant where he had previously worked, he demanded that his manager increase his hours after they were pushed back to 30-hours per week.

[RELATED: Disgruntled employee threatens to "shoot the place up" at valley Burger King]

 Ramirez told the manager he did not want to “shoot the place up.”

The news alarmed the community and customers who frequent the fast-food establishment.

“It’s too common nowadays,” said Steve Stallin, a Burger King customer. “Retribution and anger management issues.”

The manager quickly called 9-1-1 and had six employees and four customers leave discretely out a back door.

Police are crediting the manager saying his quick thinking is what saved his employees. It’s an awareness skill taught every day at the CRI - Counter Terrorism Training School in Las Vegas.  

According to his arrest report, the manager offered him food and a drink to help calm him down. She asked him to come back in and talk to the general manager about his job. She continued to try to calm him until police arrived.

“There’s going to be some indicators while he’s at work,” said Harrison Arager, from the CRI Counter Terrorism Training School. “So this might be one of those indicators where he doesn’t show up with a normal hello.”

The big thing they said helps avoid workplace violence is taking note of oddities because violent behavior doesn’t happen overnight.

“Maybe logging that in his work review for the day,” Arager said. “Reflecting that back with his other managers as well, saying 'hey I noticed you weren’t doing something right Wednesday afternoon, what was going on, let’s try to push forward.'”

Police arrived on the scene, entered the business and took Ramirez into custody. Officials recovered a partially disassembled semi-auto rifle and a machete knife in Ramirez’s backpack. They also found a 30 round magazine with a semi-auto rifle in Ramirez's pocket.  

He had those items with him when he was in the restaurant.

Arager also recommends training for large offices, making sure managers know what to do and have an exit plan in place.

“With current training, he’s going to de-escalate that situation with that agitated employee,” Arager said. “Well, you can only do that if you practice these things in a safe way and continue on having a healthy company.”

Ramirez was booked into the Clark County Detention Center for carrying a concealed weapon without a permit, carrying a concealed machete without a permit, and own or possession of a gun by a prohibited person. 

A records check showed Ramirez has an active protective order from California which indicated that he is prohibited from possessing and or purchasing a firearm. He is also an ex-felon for grand theft, stalking, and threat crime with intent to terrorize all out of California. 

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