FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — A would-be robber tried to shoot a startled diner at a McDonald’s in Fort Worth, but his gun jammed, police and witnesses said.
Jestin Anthony Joseph entered the restaurant Tuesday night, asked for a cup and then pulled out a gun, which he pointed at customers while demanding their keys. Surveillance video released by Fort Worth police shows Joseph point the gun at a man and his young son at the counter, then pull the trigger. The gun didn’t fire.
Joseph then walked outside and tried firing the weapon again, witnesses said. This time, it went off without hurting anyone. He was arrested a short time later.
Davage Armstrong, who was the customer at the counter, told KTVT-TV that he’s lucky to be alive.
“I’m still in shock. Glad to be here. I’m thankful to God that I’m still here and able to tell y’all this,” Armstrong said.
Police Sgt. Joe Loughman told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram that there were at least 15 people in the restaurant at the time. He couldn’t explain the weapon jamming.
“I’ve never seen anything like that before,” Loughman said. “It must not have been their time to go.”
Joseph is charged with five counts of aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon and remained jailed Friday on $500,000 bond.
In interviews with television stations KXAS-TV and WFAA-TV, Joseph said he has never been treated for mental illness, but he has been hearing voices since several days before his arrest.
“I’m not proud of what I did, but at the same time, I really feel like someone was after me,” he said.
Joseph said he didn’t intend to hurt anyone when entered the restaurant, but that someone there provoked him.
“I walked into McDonald’s, asked for water, went to the machine and, as soon as I did, dude said something to me,” he told KXAS. “That’s when I pulled the gun, and I lost it.”
Sgt. Jon Felty, a spokesman for the police department in Allen, a Dallas suburb about 60 miles from Fort Worth, told the Star-Telegram that officers there had dealt with Joseph about half a dozen times since 2005, including tickets for possession of drug paraphernalia and one arrest on a drug-related warrant.
“He’ll come stay awhile,” Felty said. “Then he’ll be gone a period of time. Oftentimes, he seems to suffer from extreme paranoia.”