Incident report reveals new details in fatal armed robbery attempt

Incident report reveals new details in fatal armed robbery attempt
Photo Source: Live 5
Photo Source: Live 5

CHARLESTON COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - A police incident report revealed additional information about a Saturday morning armed robbery attempt that left the suspect dead.

North Charleston police say the 19-year-old suspect died after being shot by a customer who held a valid concealed weapons permit. The suspect was identified as Joshua Davis, of North Charleston.

Police responded shortly before 5 a.m. at the Waffle House located at 6907 Dorchester Rd. on a report of a robbery and shooting, according to North Charleston Police Lt. Angela Johnson.

A responding officer said he was flagged down by six individuals in the parking lot of the restaurant, one of them being the man who shot the suspect and the others being employees, when he arrived on scene. As he approached, he noticed the man later identified as Davis lying on his back with a hooded sweatshirt over his head and cinched down around his face.

The restaurant's cash drawer was lying on the ground next to him.

A woman who says she knew Davis since he was a young boy said hearing he was the suspect identified by authorities came as a shock.

"It's very sad, because he had a lot of potential also," she said. "So I don't know what made him decide to do that."

According to an incident report, employees said Davis entered the restaurant was wearing a sweatshirt over his head and had the drawstrings pulled tight around his face. Employees told police David asked what a drink would cost, and sat in one of the restaurant's booths for a while. When several of the employees went into the back storage area of the restaurant, the suspect left the booth and walked behind the counter, brandishing a silver semiautomatic pistol and demanded money from the cash register, the report states.

When a clerk said she didn't have access to the register, the suspect started ordering employees into the back room. That's when several of the employees fled through of the front door.

The man who shot Davis was sitting in his vehicle as the event unfolded. He eventually left his vehicle, walked across the parking lot and sought cover behind another parked car.

The customer said he took out his gun as the suspect was leaving the restaurant, and ordered him to drop his gun, but said Davis raised the weapon, and the customer engaged him in fire. The customer's brother was on the phone with him when it happened. They disconnected and his brother called 911.

The responding officer said the suspect was breathing, but unresponsive when he found him. He looked like he had a single gunshot wound to the lower right side of his abdomen, just above the groin.

"(Davis) was wrong for doing that," the woman who knew Davis said, "but then the customer, he protected everyone else. It could have been potentially more dangerous than it was."

The customer has a valid concealed weapons permit and no charges have been filed against the customer, but police are still investigating, Johnson said.

The customer's brother says both of them are still shaken up and trying to deal with what happened.

A statement was issued Monday from a Waffle House spokesperson:

We are very fortunate that no associate or customer were harmed in this tragic incident. It is Waffle House, Inc., policy not to allow firearms with the exception of law enforcement officers, including security guards. It is out understanding that the customer involved was an off duty security guard who was carrying his firearm and the incident occurred outside the restaurant.

We are well aware that different people and businesses have varying opinions regarding this issue, and we respect the right of all to have different opinions. However, we continue to believe this is the best policy for the safety of our customers and associates.

We are very thankful that no other customers or associates were hurt and will continue to work with local law enforcement as they investigate this matter.

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