Last updated: 8 months ago
Police fatally shot an armed man, Qawi A. Muhammad, when he came into a downtown Orlando Wahlburgers restaurant Wednesday morning February 28, 2018, the Orlando Police Department said.
Orlando Police Deputy Chief Eric Smith said a person in the Wahlburgers had a domestic violence injunction against Muhammad.
Muhammad came into Wahlburgers at 200 S. Orange Ave. just after the restaurant opened at 11 a.m., Smith said. Patrons called 911, and employees called police as they followed Muhammad out of the restaurant. Several officers surrounded him at Hughey Avenue and told him to drop his weapon.
He did not, and officers fired at him, he said.
Muhammad was taken to Orlando Regional Medical Center, where he died. Police declined to say how he knew the person who had an injunction against him. No other injuries were reported.
He said the man showed he had a handgun at the restaurant, but did not reveal any other details about his interaction with employees at the store. It is unclear whether the man fired any shots before being struck by police.
Investigators cordoned off the Wahlburgers restaurant as well as a block of Church Street just north of the Amway Center, between Division and Hughey avenues. The roads were reopened close to 5:30 p.m., OPD said.
The shooting is now under investigation by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Smith said, and no other details were immediately released.
Kimberly Simeone, director of Marketing and Communications for Wahlburgers, said about 10 or 15 employees were inside the restaurant close to the time of the incident, when the man came inside the restaurant “potentially” looking for an employee.
Simeone clarified that during the brief incident, no guests where inside the restaurant and shots were never fired in the building. Wahlburgers was closed for the rest of the day and the company provided counselors for employees who might need them, she added.