The Unexpected Reason One Woman Pulled Out A Gun In A Philadelphia Chipotle

A Chipotle in Northeast Philadelphia was preparing to close early on September 18, 2021. CBS Philly explains that this was due to staffing issues, but the cashier explained that customers could still order online. Still, not everyone was alright with this arrangement. Upon hearing the news, one woman in line pulled out a gun, and police said she said something along the lines of "if someone doesn't make her food, she will be back, and there will be a problem." The order was promptly prepared. The police ask that anyone with information call 215-868-8477.

The irony that a worker was threatened with a gun during the ongoing labor shortage should not be lost on anyone. It's a self-perpetuating cycle in which the shortage both caused the situation and was caused by such situations. Reports like this one from NPR claim that an increasing number of rude or aggressive customers was a major factor in driving away potential workers from the fast-food industry. This is just the latest and more extreme example.

This really isn't that unexpected

For SEO purposes, the headline declares that pulling a gun on Chipotle workers because they're closing due to being understaffed is unexpected. However, when you consider the previous news stories of customers responding to disappointment by pulling out a gun, it's hard to really call the story unexpected. In 2019, Popeyes launched its chicken sandwich and sparked what would become the endless marketing campaign of the "chicken sandwich wars." The problem with being such a success is that in the early days, the company would run out of stock. And in one case, a male suspect pulled out a gun, KHOU writes. Fortunately, no one was hurt. Also in 2019, McDonald's restaurants in south Chicago filed a report about the large amount of violent crime they face. CBS relays that customers have attacked workers over missing french fries and threatened them with guns.

And, of course, the danger extended into the pandemic when workers were forced to either tell unpredictable customers to wear their masks or run the risk of allowing the virus to spread to them and everyone else (via Business Insider). In some cases, four of which BuzzFeed covered in June 2021, workers were murdered for maintaining mask mandates. Rather than a strange news story, the Chipotle incident was a blessedly peaceful version of a growing trend in which customer service has developed a deadly imperative.