HARRIS COUNTY, Texas — An employee at a Popeyes restaurant in northeast Harris County was arrested after authorities said he sold drugs while on the job and shot someone during a drug exchange gone wrong.
Harris County Pct. Four police officers responded to reports of a shooting at the Popeyes restaurant in the 8400 block of FM 1960 Bypass Road West around 4 p.m
Officers said the employee, identified as Yadiel Gonzalez, was selling marijuana during work hours.
Authorities said the employee was actively selling drugs while only working at the restaurant.
“The employee was working at the drive-thru counter or the checkout system at the front desk. And when a person comes into the restaurant or a vehicle through the drive-thru and the smell of marijuana emanates from their person or the vehicle, he gives them a phone number and tells them that he sells the marijuana himself and to them call him , if they need something,” said Capt. Buddy Gheen of the Harris County Pct. 4 Constable’s office.
Further investigation revealed that an unknown male entered the restaurant to purchase marijuana from Gonzalez. While the two men were making the sale in the restroom, the unknown man attempted to steal Gonzalez’s backpack, which contained the drugs.
The fight escalated to the front of the restaurant, where Gonzalez pulled out a gun and shot the unknown man at least seven times.
It’s not clear if the unidentified man was shot, but officers said he ran away.
Officers retrieved the backpack containing the drugs and the gun from a trash can and arrested Gonzalez. He has since been charged with unlawful carrying of a weapon, deadly conduct and tampering with evidence.
Popeyes’ corporate headquarters released a statement regarding the incident.
“This dangerous and unacceptable behavior involved a teenager who had been employed at this Texas restaurant for less than a month. The affected employee was immediately terminated and the franchisee who owns this restaurant is sharing everything with local police.”
It was revealed in court that Gonzalez is 19 years old.
Bail for Gonzalez was set at $20,100.
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