A 20-year-old man who tried to rob a fast-food restaurant in Carney yesterday was arrested after the restaurant's grill man chased him out with a spatula, then smashed in the windshield of his getaway car with a shovel.
The robbery attempt began about 1:45 p.m. when a man walked into Wendy's Old Fashioned Hamburgers in the 9800 block of Harford Road, announced a robbery and indicated to the restaurant's employees that he was armed.
As one frightened employee ran to a restroom and locked the door, the robber vaulted the counter, emptied a cash register and headed for the exit after pushing aside another employee, said Sgt. Stephen R. Doarnberger, a police spokesman.
But the robber wasn't prepared to contend with William Cecil Long, who works behind the restaurant's grill. Mr. Long, 35, chased the robber, caught up with him at the door and whacked him with the only weapon handy: his spatula.
Then Mr. Long, still armed only with his spatula, chased the robberout of the restaurant and around the building before the fleeing man jumped into a 1987 Chevrolet Caprice, Sergeant Doarnberger said.
At this point Mr. Long exchanged his spatula for a heavier-duty weapon -- a shovel that was being used for landscaping -- and slammed it into the windshield of the car.
The frantic holdup man accelerated and drove right into another car waiting in the drive-in-window lane. The getaway car then caromed into the barrier wall that surrounds the restaurant's trash container.
The indefatigable Mr. Long was joined by another employee, Paul Davis Jr., 22, and they pulled the man from the car and held him on the ground until the police arrived.
The police said they did not find a weapon on the man or in the car. But they said they did find a syringe and the money taken in the robbery.
The suspect was taken to Franklin Square Hospital after exhibiting symptoms of possible drug withdrawal, Sergeant Doarnberger said.
Cpl. Thomas McCreer identified the suspect as Dana Lewis Folkes, 20, of 1900 N. Castle St., in Baltimore. Corporal McCreer said chargesare pending.
Mr. Davis suffered a minor knee injury and was treated and released at Franklin Square Hospital.
Wendy's officials would not allow their employees to discuss the robbery.
"We are not heroes," said Gary R. Bowers, a company spokesman. "We serve hamburgers. We do what we can to serve the public."
The police said they discourage people from offering the kind of resistance put up by Mr. Long and Mr. Davis during holdups for fear that someone may be injured or killed.