McDonald’s Employee Fires Gun at Customer

A 22-year-old McDonald’s drive-thru employee in Florida, Chassidy Gardner, was arrested and charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. The charges stem from an incident on June 14, where Gardner allegedly fired two shots at a customer who expressed dissatisfaction with their order.

The incident was reported to the police around 1 a.m., following a dispute at a McDonald’s on East Memorial Boulevard in Lakeland. According to the police, the disagreement began when the customers felt their order was incorrect. Gardner reportedly threw a drink at the customers as they were attempting to leave. In response, two customers exited their vehicle and threw drinks at Gardner through the drive-through window. Gardner then allegedly armed herself with a handgun.

The police report states that the customers drove around the side of the restaurant, prompting Gardner to exit the building, gun in hand, and continue the argument. Gardner confirmed to the police that the weapon was her Glock, distinctively colored pink, blue, and purple.

As the customers’ vehicle was leaving the parking lot, Gardner allegedly fired her weapon, hitting the car at least once with a single bullet. Gardner was subsequently arrested and detained at the Polk County Jail. She was released on June 15 after posting a $15,000 bail.

Gardner’s account of the incident, as stated in the arrest affidavit, differs slightly. She claimed that the customers began a verbal altercation with her after overhearing her comment about not being paid enough. According to Gardner, one of the passengers threw a slushy at her. She also stated that she fired two “warning shots” when she saw two women and one man exit the vehicle and approach her.

However, the police noted inconsistencies in Gardner’s story, particularly regarding her reasons for exiting the restaurant after the altercation. Gardner claimed she was trying to pull a co-worker back into the restaurant and was attempting to leave work when she saw the subjects approaching.

McDonald’s franchisee Lanny Sumpter expressed shock and disturbance at the incident, stating that the safety and wellbeing of customers and crew are paramount. He confirmed that Gardner has been terminated due to several policy violations and pledged to cooperate with law enforcement in their ongoing investigation.