A Waffle House waitress in Newnan, Georgia, is out of job after firing a gun at three robbers on early Thursday afternoon, as they fled the restaurant.
The Newnan Times-Herald reports that Heather “Shorty” Burkinshaw-Stanley was working at a local Waffle House restaurant at 1363 S. Highway 29, when three men entered and ordered dinner. After finishing their meals, they slid a note to the cashier, with a warning that they’d kill everyone in the restaurant if they didn’t get the cash out of the register.
After grabbing the money, they fled the restaurant on foot, headed towards their vehicle. That’s when Burkinshaw-Stanley took matters into her own hands. She went to her car and pulled out a gun, and fired warning shots at them. She admitted that she was scared, and was trying to make sure they didn’t come back.
“I wasn’t sure if they were coming back or not. I was in fear for my life, my co-workers’ lives, and I did what I thought was right.”
The following day, she received a call and learned that she’d been fired. Reportedly, the company relies on internal measures for security, which doesn’t include its employees stepping in to assist. Pat Warner, a Waffle House corporate spokesperson, stated that the company wants “people to feel safe on both sides of the counter,” but refused to delve into specifics regarding the decision to terminate Burkinshaw-Stanley.
Waffle House waitress pulls her own gun when robbers threaten restaurant. @MJohnsonWSB reports LIVE at 5:33. pic.twitter.com/pwCn362AHW
— WSB-TV (@wsbtv) December 30, 2016
All Waffle House restaurants, despite complaints from a number of guns rights advocates, are considered gun-free zone areas. Warner said although the company respects others views on gun rights, at the end of the day, Waffle House restaurants are family-friendly, which was one of the deciding points for the gun-free zone policy.
“We respect everyone’s opinion. We just feel, for our company, this is the best policy to have in place, and this is a policy that a lot of companies have.”
In the meantime, Burkinshaw-Stanley, who started a GoFundMe campaign shortly after her termination, stands by her decision to fight back.
“I safely fired a round in the air in an attempt to scare the robbers who were in the process of getting in their vehicle, not knowing if they were retrieving their weapon to return to the Waffle House. My shot must have gotten their attention as they rapidly drove off.”
Burkinshaw-Stanley had worked at Waffle House for two years.