Imagine yourself at a bar with some friends celebrating July Fourth and then suddenly a man with a backpack jumps up on the bar and starts yelling “Allah is the only one true god.” In that moment, what would YOU do? Would you run away from the man? Would you run toward the man and tackle him? Would you just remain eating your meal with your friends? After a long month of Ramadan and over 800 people dying at the hands of terrorists celebrating the Muslim holiday in their own way, it would be pretty difficult to sit still.
Customers at the Horsewood’s Restaurant in Caldwell, ID. experienced just this last Friday night. The restaurant panicked around 8:15 pm Friday night after a drunk man got up on the bar and “praised Allah as the only god.” The restaurant owners say that customers immediately bolted to every door in the restaurant.
“It was surreal,” Jessie Horsewood said. “There were purses left on chairs, cell phones left on tables.” They say Bell was wearing a backpack and it worried customers that he was carrying a weapon. “All this is going on real fast and I”m just trying to get him away,” Horsewood’s bartender, Christopher Ozuna, told KTVB.
Several staff members pulled the man, Ralmanzow Bell, from the bar and outside they were fearful of the backpack Bell was wearing and thought he might have had a weapon on him.
“That’s what panicked people,” Lt. Hoadley said. “Not necessarily what he was saying- that maybe contributed to it- but that, along with a backpack, and then people saying he had a gun. It startled people.” “I think this is more of a case of a guy who was intoxicated and did something out of the norm and that scared a lot of people and freaked some people out,” Lt. Hoadley said.
Do you think these people reacted appropriately to the situation?