KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Armed robbers rushed into a popular Waldo fast food restaurant in broad daylight Monday afternoon, and were caught on camera holding the owner at gunpoint and emptying out the cash register.
It happened around 3 p.m. at Max's Burger's and Gyros near 82nd Street and Wornall Road.
The family-owned restaurant has been there for more than a decade and has a steady stream of customers each day, but only the owner was inside when gun-toting thieves busted through the front door.
“It`s pretty scary,” said owner Abdi, who is affectionately known to most customers as “Max.”
Frightened, but focused, he did as he was told.
“I wasn't thinking,” Abdi said. “I was just trying to give them the money and let them go.”
He emptied out the cash register as they shouted profanities in his face.
“I gave them everything,” he said. “You know, thank you God, that they didn`t do any stupid things. They got the money and ran out.”
Seconds later, he was on the phone with Kansas City police and his popular Waldo restaurant became a crime scene.
“It`s sickening,” said loyal customer Ayanna Spearman of the robbery at her favorite restaurant. “Just because he`s just so nice, he doesn`t deserve things like that, because he`s been here so long.”
Spearman said she was shocked something like this would happen in the middle of the day, right next to busy Wornall Road.
“All these witnesses,” she said as she pointed to passing cars, “like you`re in that much need of $5 that you come in to somebody`s business at 3 o`clock? So it`s just like they didn`t care. So I hope the police catch them.”
The surveillance video is now key evidence in the investigation, and Abdi is now thankful he’s still here.
“I`m glad I’m alive,” he said, “and hey, the money is gone, but money comes and goes. Thank you God I’m okay.”
Abdi wasn't hurt during the robbery, and said from now on, he plans to lock the front door during the afternoon hours so he can make sure everyone who comes in is a legitimate customer.
If you recognize the men in the surveillance video, call Crime Stoppers at (816) 474-TIPS.