COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI) – Cups and condiments were flying, customers and employees were physically fighting at a local restaurant, and it was all caught on camera.
The Columbus Police Chief is using the viral video to send what could be a life-saving message.
The video, shot Friday just after seven at the Leigh Mall has been viewed a hundred-64-thousand times.
The Columbus Police Chief said he’s very disturbed by what he sees, and he’s not just talking about the fight itself.
In addition to the viral video, shot by a mall customer, the owner of American Deli showed us his footage, captured by his surveillance cameras.
Police said it all started when a customer’s credit card was declined, and the customer’s two daughters didn’t like the way the way the employees were treating their mother.
In the video you can see someone, police said that’s a daughter, try to hop over the counter, as an employee starts hurling drinks at her.
In the video, police said you can see that the daughter manages to make her way behind the counter.
They then start fighting.
From the cell phone video, another person is throwing items at employees behind the counter, and then, police said the other daughter stands on the counter and starts assaulting the employees involved in the fight.
Police said the fighting only stopped because one of the daughters had a seizure and fell to the floor.
We asked shoppers what they would you do if they were shopping and happened upon a fight.
One customer said they’d watch, while others said they’d try to get away. Not one person said they’d call police. That’s disturbing to Columbus Police Chief Fred Shelton.
“That’s absolutely the wrong thing to do,” Shelton said.
“Call police. Call the police, because again, we’re talking about lives. We’re talking about someone who could get seriously hurt.”
Shelton said he’s thankful no one pulled a weapon, and while the cell phone video could serve as evidence, he said people should call 9-1-1 first.
In this instance, he said, someone called for an ambulance before anyone called for police.
“Everybody wanna’ get it on video. Everybody wanna’ send it around. Make the call, you can get your video but make the call first,” Shelton said.
Customers said they wouldn’t call police because they wouldn’t want to have their name out there. Shelton said, in most cases, you can remain anonymous. While some witnesses might have to testify in court.
The restaurant owner doesn’t want to press charges, he said he wants to put this behind him. Shelton said the employee could press assault charges if she wanted. Meanwhile Police are considering charging the two with disorderly conduct, that’s a misdemeanor and comes with a fine.
We also reached out to the mall manager, she declined to comment. The American Deli owner said mall security did respond to the incident.