Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Robber targets diners in upscale Tacoma restaurant


TACOMA, Wash. – Diners at Pacific Grill, an upscale downtown Tacoma restaurant, were confronted by a man who was dining alone Monday evening.

According to Tacoma Police, the man sat down and ordered beer, then got up, went into a private dining area and demanded money from the diners.

He told them this was a robbery and demanded their wallets.

"He comes in the room and says, 'I want your wallet and your cash'," recalled Dr. Charles Weatherbee who was seated with fellow doctors and drug reps.

Another doctor handed over his wallet, but when he only found credit cards, he calmly returned to his table.

That's when kitchen staff and patrons surrounded the suspect.

Then the man got up and confronted the same diners in the private dining room again.

"I want your money and take care of my bill now," said the suspect.

One of the doctors, who had been at target practice earlier, pulled out his gun and ordered the suspect out, saying, "Get out of the restaurant now!"

The suspect left and was greeted by police officers outside.

Tacoma Police spokesperson Mark Fulghum says the armed doctor acted within the law, defending himself and others during a crime.

The suspect is now undergoing a mental evaluation. He faces one robbery charge and several attempted robbery charges.

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