Fast Food, Slow Rescue: McDonald’s Employees Shown Standing By As Woman Is Repeatedly Attacked In Restaurant

The disturbing video below shows a women being beaten by two other women as McDonald employees do virtually nothing to help her. While a manager makes a minimal effort to stop the fight, he then walks away and does not offer help to the woman on the ground. The girls then return and resume the beating. Other employees are shown doing nothing but watching the scene. The attack occurred in Baltimore, Maryland. The victim has now been identified as Chrissy Lee Polis, 22, who has been identified as a transgender woman. A manager at the Rosedale McDonald’s said she was “not allowed to speak to a reporter.”

According to reports, a 14-year-old female has been charged as a juvenile while charges are pending against an 18-year-old female.

The question is the liability of McDonald’s for this type of passivity. Companies often tell employees not to get involved in fights but simply call police. However, here the McDonald’s employees are not even showing any interest in helping the woman when the fight stopped. Liability, however, will remain a difficult course if the manager called the police –which is viewed as the minimally required response. However, this is not a case of any affirmative duty to rescue — where the American rule is that no such duty exists absent responsibility for the original danger or injury. This woman is a business invitee and the company bears responsibility for the safe conditions for customers. McDonald’s must also anticipate criminal acts. However, no law requires a manager to physically intervene. What is most disturbing is the absence of anyone rendering aid to this woman.

The fact is that this manager may be doing exactly what McDonald’s wants employees to do: nothing. It will be interesting to see if McDonald’s instructs managers not to render aid in in such circumstances.

The manager encourages the attackers to flee before the police arrive. He can certainly defend this advice as simply a way to remove the dangerous individuals from the scene. However, it would have been more convincing if it was combined with a modicum of concern for the victim.

McDonald’s seems a common site for violence, including additional stories this week. One has to wonder how long the employee, identified as Vernon Hackett, on social network accounts, posted the video clip to his YouTube page earlier who took and posted the video has as an employee with the Golden Arches.

There is no word on what is being done to find the culprits. There have also been suggestions that the attack was racially motivated. The incident involved two young black women repeatedly attacking an older white woman.

McDonald’s released the following statement:

“We are shocked by the video from a Baltimore franchised restaurant showing an assault. This incident is unacceptable, disturbing and troubling. McDonald’s strives to be a safe, welcoming environment for everyone who visits. Nothing is more important to us than the safety of customers and employees in our restaurants. We are working with the franchisee and the local authorities to investigate this matter.”

Notably, the company made no mention of the failure to help the patron or what its policy or training says about addressing such incidents.

96 thoughts on “Fast Food, Slow Rescue: McDonald’s Employees Shown Standing By As Woman Is Repeatedly Attacked In Restaurant”

  1. How about a gender motivated crime is just as stupid as if this were a racially motivated crime?

    How about some of us might be judging based on the crime committed not the motivation?

    Who really cares why? Unless it was self-defense or in defense of another? There is never a valid reason for beating another human being. Ever.

    The bottom line is a couple of thug-girls decided to beat somebody and the McNitwits watched on and did nothing to help the victim even after the Lil’ Darlins fled the scene.

    Why they did it is immaterial to their actions as taken.

    Be it gender discrimination or racial discrimination or simply that the girls were just plain ol’ mean bitches, unless they have the mitigation of self-defense or the defense of others facing imminent harm, there is simply no excuse for what they did.

  2. How about the one important fact left out of this report. The woman beaten was transgender and the girls did not want him in the bathroom with them. How about know the whole story before you judge. The news wants to make this about race biut its really a gender issue. Im from Baltimore and seen blacks and whites behaving this way so its not about race its about ignorance and evil and thats what those girls have in common. Those stereotyping are just as bad as they are in my opinion, its so unfair to stereotype and I pry those who do it get the same treatment cause that what breeds this type of behavior.

  3. “I’m only a 5-foot tall older woman but I’d have risked getting beaten up myself to help this poor girl.”

    And you have the heart of a lion.

    Most admirable.

  4. I’m just so fed up with people and I’m sick of everyone these days pulling the race card or the religion card or the political party card or whatever. People have just simply gotten stupid, selfish, irresponsible, immoral, unrestrained, and unaccountable. The human race’s moral compass just doesn’t know where north is any more.

    A hundred years ago, this kind of thing would have been virtually unheard of because it was just plain wrong. Now, it’s common-place and everyone has a way to justify it and blame it on someone else.

    It doesn’t matter what the white girl said or did, there is NO WAY she deserved this kind of beating. It doesn’t matter what color or anything else she is, same for the attackers. They didn’t quit – they kept leaving her and coming back to dish out more. They ganged up on her. They were WAY out of control and deserve to be criminally prosecuted as adults – both of them. And the jerk who was filming the whole thing, egging them on and laughing, out to be charged as an accessory. And this whole incident isn’t just assault, it is assault with the intent to do serious physical harm – they knew what they were doing when they repeatedly came back to continue.

    The whole McDonald’s position is lame but Walmart (at least) does the same. Don’t get involved, look away, pretend nothing is happening and maybe we’ll all just wake up and find out it was just a bad dream. Pathetic. So, they are so concerned about their own employees that they’d rather require them to shed any sense of simple human decency as a condition of employment. But even after their “non-intervention,” these employees showed what sorry excuses for humans they are by not so much as asking the girl if she was ok and helping her after her attackers moved away.

    I’m only a 5-foot tall older woman but I’d have risked getting beaten up myself to help this poor girl. At least it would have split the attackers up so they couldn’t gang up on one person. I wouldn’t have liked getting involved but the viciousness of this attack was inhuman and I couldn’t have stood by and watched it happen. If a person is worth anything in this world, he or she has to do what’s right, even if it is a risk.

  5. If any public employee is caught doing something wrong, they HAVE to suspend with pay. The employing agency can take their keys and send them to the house, but cannot take their paycheck until their case is concluded. Then there may be a suspension for a time without pay, or they may be fired.

  6. “If these were cops watching the beatdown and doing nothing instead of mcdonalds employees, it wouldnt even be news.”

    Yes “ekeyra”, if it were cops they would be in the news. They would have been suspended and given leave without pay pending investigation…and splashed all over the news. ”

    Hahahaha thats a good one. Find me one story where the cops involved in ANY wrongdoing are suspended without pay. I dont know what fantasy land you live in but cops routinely put people in the hospital or worse and recieve “administrative leave” which is paid vacation long enough for their coworkers and friends to decide that they followed police procedure and did nothing wrong when they put someone in a coma or kicked down the wrong door and shot someone.

    Besides that, why would anyone expect a minimum wage mcdonalds employee to be responsible for their safety? Its beyond laughable that you could tell anyone that when you order a big mac you expect mcdonalds to attend to your physical safety while you eat it. You paid for the burger, you got the burger, there is no obligation for mcdonalds to provide you with anything else, much less personalized security services. If youre that scared of getting accosted in mcdonalds maybe you should evaluate the choices you made in your life that people in mcdonalds want to beat you up?

  7. czech80
    1, April 22, 2011 at 1:30 pm
    Politically incorrect or not, black on white crime is far, far more prevalent than the reverse. As such I ask. If any group is being victimized, isn’t it the whites? Brings me back to the good old hate crime laws
    1, April 22, 2011 at 2:08 pm
    @James M.,

    1) I’d hope you weren’t including me in your “ignorant racists” comment simply because I think cases like these demonstrate how arbitrary hate crime laws are and call people out on all sides for racial comments.

    2) It’s a popular blog. Probably comes up quicker in searches than some 4 person one.

    3) Problem with legal liability is that these days some lawyer would sue on the behalf of the girls if they were hurt when someone tackled them.

    4) 50 years ago a fight would end when someone dropped. Ganging up on someone would get you an a$s-kicking in return. Society has imploded and there is no accountability for any action any more

    if james m wasn’t clear please allow me

    you are are an ignorant racist

    as far as 50 years ago this might have ended with someone hanging from a tree. things like that happened in 1961

  8. It’s a crazy world out there. It’s too bad this has turned into a race thing. We as human beings should watch out for each other, regardless of the color of someone’s skin. It’s called being a human being.

  9. Mike A.,
    You are spot on about this braniac who evidently thinks it is ok for two people to beat up one person because he alleges that the victim was a transvestite! I didn’t think it was illegal in Baltimore to be a transvestite in a public place! I also never realized that Mac employees take medical coursework to be able to determine that someone is faking a seizure. Besides, if he thought it was a fake, why did he turn off the video? I was glad to see that the police seem to have two people in custody for the beating.
    I didn’t catch the managers statements to the assailants when I watched the video, but if he said that, it does add another level of liability, in my opinion. It also suggests(guess) to me that maybe he “knew” the assailants and if so could he have done more to stop it before it got out of hand??

  10. I just read the entry by Vernon “Charm” Hackett, the employee who took the video. He will probably be looking for new career opportunities since he is unlikely to climb McDonald’s management ladder.

  11. Well, the police refer to the victim as a “22 year old woman”. I’m assuming they can tell the difference, even if the sub-human sub-morons at McDonald’s can’t.

  12. “If these were cops watching the beatdown and doing nothing instead of mcdonalds employees, it wouldnt even be news.”

    Yes “ekeyra”, if it were cops they would be in the news. They would have been suspended and given leave without pay pending investigation…and splashed all over the news. McDonalds needs to do the same with it’s employees and splashed all over the news as well. Definitely not eating there again!

  13. rafflaw:

    I agree with you as to McDonald’s duty. The woman who was assaulted most certainly has a cause of action against McDonald’s for failing to provide safe premises and failing to take reasonable steps to stop the assault once it began. It also appears that no one bothered to call the police immediately. In addition, the idiotic statement by the store manager encouraging the assailants to run before the police arrived is going to be written in block letters on a chart and placed on an easel for the jury to view throughout the trial.

  14. If these were cops watching the beatdown and doing nothing instead of mcdonalds employees, it wouldnt even be news.

  15. “Third, as I stated previously, there is no context here. What happened here is horrible. But the facts are skewed. What we know is the girl was given an awful beat down and no one in that store was prepared to take control of the situation. What led to the beat down is unknown. Did these girls just single her out because she was white? Did the girl say something to provoke the attack? What relationship, if any, did this girl have with her attackers? Is there indeed a hate crime here? ”

    So you’re saying maybe there’s a good reason that these two criminals tried to kill this woman? OKAY.

  16. Two things come to mind
    (a) never go to McDonalds to eat and
    (b) if you don’t yet have one, go get a CCDW.
    Better to defend a wrongful death civil suit than be a vegetable or worse.

  17. Hey Joeey… your common sense assumptions may not be right.

    Unfortunately I couldn’t track down any fully analyzed statistics regarding assault. So I have no idea what the total breakdown of assaults in the United States would be. But let’s look at murder, in 2008 there were 3355 murders perpetrated by white people and 3284 murders perpetrated by black people. (2008 Crime in the US Report FBI) Let me say that in the case of both white and black people most of their victims were of the same race. So if you’re white you’re 6 times more likely to be killed by a white person and if you’re black you’re over 12 times more likely to be killed by a black person.

    According to the CIA Fact Book black people make up 12.85% of the US population. But they account for 47.3% of all murders. Now I’m not suggesting that black people are bad or something like that… but what I am suggesting is clearly there is a significant problem going on within the black community that needs to be addressed and corrected.

    When a group makes up ~13% of the population and accounts for 47% of the murders, there’s a problem. If we fail to recognize the facts because of political correct bullshit then we will never solve the systemic problems that causes a disproportionate amount of violate crime being produced by a segment of the population.

  18. I think you have the question wrong. Not what is McDonald’s liability, but what happened to the moral fiber of our nation! I think the person filming, the male employees, as well as the manager (who obviously knew the attackers) and did nothing should be put in jail for at least a year.

    This is how students behave in school–so now they are carrying it into the “grown-up” world with little or no consequences. Cheer fights–do nothing to stop them. We need to change the behaviors we reward as a society.

    And the little old lady has more guts than all of you phonies posting your racial comments and trying not to acknoweldge the truth when you see it. Truth is truth, whether you say it is or not. You skin color does not change the truth. And the attackers in this instance were goons and thugs.

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