a white man was arrested Wednesday for threatening a group of Somalis teens with a handgun inside a McDonald’s in Eden Prairie.
55-year-old, Lloyd Edward Johnson, from Eden Prairie, was jailed on suspicion of second-degree assault, a felony, in connection with the encounter Monday night at the fast-food restaurant on Prairie Center Drive in the heart of the suburb’s sprawling retail district.
Jihan Abdullahi, 17, said she and a friend both tried to pay for an order with an app on their smartphone as the man stood behind them.
the man started to complain that he wanted them to hurry up, she said. Then, as they were passing him after leaving the line, he asked them if they were using electronic benefits transfer cards, which are like debit cards for welfare benefits, to pay for their food.
Abdullahi said she responded, “ ‘Just because I’m black you think my friends and I live under EBT?’ And he said, ‘Yes.’ ”
the man responded then by waving a handgun at her and other young people before leaving.
the teenagers quickly backed away, and several people shouted that the man was holding a gun.
a restaurant employee demanded the group of teens to leave the restaurant using foul language, despite the pleas of a bystander’s not to put the teenagers in more danger.
Paul Ostergaard, the owner and operator of the Eden Prairie McDonald’s franchise location, said that he is looking into the matter closely insisting that the safety of his employees and customers means a lot to him.