October 24th, 2012
02:16 AM ET

Ohio fast food employee is fired after fleeing robber

Mary Archer had been held up twice before at the Arby’s restaurant in Fairborn, Ohio, where she was the manager on duty, her daughter said. She came away unscathed both times.

But after the third robbery Friday, when a man with a knife entered the store and demanded the assistant manager turn over the restaurant’s money, her boss fired her.

“I just never thought that this would happen to me, especially since my life was at stake,” she told CNN affiliate WHIO.

Archer was terminated for staying at the restaurant by herself, “long after hours,” which is in violation of Arby’s franchise security policy, said John Gray, vice-president of corporate communications for Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc.

The store location where she worked is a franchise that is not corporate-owned, he said.

Archer was not injured in the attempted robbery, even though she got into an altercation with the knife-wielding intruder.

“I had pushed him away,” she said, “because I’m like, I’m not going to die in Arby’s tonight. I’m just not.”

She screamed for help through the drive-through window, then jumped out of it to get away from the man, who fled. Someone heard Archer and called police.

Later, Archer signed a document her supervisor handed her, stating that she had violated security policy.

It was the end of her employment. January would have marked 23 years with the company, she said.

She crumpled up the security notice out of frustration.

“She had been warned in the past and had received a written warning that if she did it again she would be terminated,” Gray explained, saying that the policy was to preserve employee safety.

Archer said she was at the restaurant late, because she was closing up shop. Then she heard someone at the door.  It was the man with the knife.

“We have no alarms, no cameras,” she said. “That should have been nipped in the bud that very first attempt.”

Archer’s daughter told WHIO the store had been robbed three times in the past six months and that her mother had been on duty each time.

“I don’t want my job back,” Archer said.

She is happy to be alive.

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Filed under: Crime • Fast Food • Jobs • Ohio • U.S.
soundoff (290 Responses)
  1. toofishy

    3 times while the same person was alone in the restaurant with no witnesses 3 Times? complete inside job she should be investigated and arrested IF she "locked up" after letting co-worker out how did he get in? such complete bull

    October 24, 2012 at 8:59 am | Report abuse |
    • in reply

      She had just let the other employee out of the door when the "buzzer" door bell rang. She thought the other employee had forgotten something and opened the door. To her surprise it was the robber.

      October 24, 2012 at 9:27 am | Report abuse |
    • Stefan

      Have to agree. Most likely she's making herself an easy target – and that is why the manager told her she couldn't vioalate policy again. But there's also that chance she was involved. It's not an easy decision but the manager made it and I won't tell him he's wrong.

      October 24, 2012 at 9:27 am | Report abuse |
    • Chris R

      Ummm... No. Look, this time the robber didn't get ay money. It's a bad inside job if they don't come away with any money. Also, it's a lot easier and safer to skim money from the till (which you can do as an AM at close) and you'll get more anyway. If she's frequently on a closing shift it makes sense that she'd be the one dealing with this frequently. The store owner should have installed security equipment *before* the first attempt.

      October 24, 2012 at 9:40 am | Report abuse |
    • Jackblob

      Do you not think there was an investigation after the second time? Duh!

      October 24, 2012 at 9:40 am | Report abuse |
  2. elvis316

    I also poop liquid after Arby's. True story. Actually, I don't anymore, don't eat there.

    October 24, 2012 at 8:59 am | Report abuse |
  3. Cindy

    The issue at hand is that she placed her own life in danger when she violated company protocol and stayed in the restaurant by herself. This type of scenario is ideal for anyone who wants to rob or attempt to rob any kind of business. You have a much better chance of survival if there is more than just one person alone. The one perplexing thing is why the facility did not have an alarm system installed. Cameras I can understand; an alarm system in a high-crime area...the franchisee should answer to that.

    October 24, 2012 at 9:03 am | Report abuse |
  4. BIlly Joe Bob

    If you can't be in the store alone, why don't the fire the worker that left her alone instead?

    October 24, 2012 at 9:09 am | Report abuse |
  5. Bill D.

    Silly question, but if she was there long after hours, why wasn't the door locked? How did the guy get in?

    October 24, 2012 at 9:11 am | Report abuse |
  6. brewhaha

    This story is the US in a nutshell.

    October 24, 2012 at 9:13 am | Report abuse |
  7. S

    In a second version of this story (from the local newspaper where the incident occurred), the last employee had just left and then almost immediately there was a knock. She assumed it was the employee she had just let out, but it was the robber.

    I'm not making any comments about this, it's just that the CNN version of the article leaves out this detail which gives a little insight as to what allegedly occurred.

    October 24, 2012 at 9:16 am | Report abuse |
  8. Aud

    How did the robber "enter" the store? I'm assuming the door was locked and he broke the glass or something? I've worked at places where you could only stay an hour after closing to clean up, I can understand this safety issue. If she was warned repeatedly, then I guess her job should be terminated b/c she doesn't know how to follow instructions.

    October 24, 2012 at 9:16 am | Report abuse |
  9. Caiha

    The manager there is lucky. Friend of mine got chewed out by his manager for having too much cash in the register after some scrweed up junky had been pointing a gun his face all night. That manager spent the next couple months with his jaw wired shut.

    October 24, 2012 at 9:20 am | Report abuse |
    • Selmers

      Im sure that's true.

      October 24, 2012 at 9:32 am | Report abuse |
    • Reince Priebus

      When does your friend get out of jail?

      October 24, 2012 at 9:52 am | Report abuse |
  10. i_know_everything

    damn, 47% er, can't do anything right

    October 24, 2012 at 9:28 am | Report abuse |
  11. MickiH

    I am glad the manager wasn't harmed, however I agree that this seems VERY suspect! If she had been warned prior not to be at the restaurant alone and failed to heed the warnings, I can definitely understand why she was teminated. I do think the company needs to look into her accounts of the robberies further. It just seems too coincidental that this same manager would be robbed 3 times within 6 months.

    October 24, 2012 at 9:42 am | Report abuse |
  12. Josh

    If she was there alone, after hours, to "close up shop", why wasn't the customer door LOCKED?

    October 24, 2012 at 9:44 am | Report abuse |
  13. Josh

    If she was there alone, after hours, to simply "close up shop" for the day, why wasn't the customer door locked? I mean at this point, she isn't able to take any more food orders.

    October 24, 2012 at 9:46 am | Report abuse |
  14. Jeff

    Sounds like she should sue her boss for failing to provide a safe work environment.

    October 24, 2012 at 9:49 am | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      Boss warned her twice. She ignorned the warnings. Got canned. And rightly so. If she didn't have the sense to lock the door when she was alone at night after two robberies, then she shouldn't be allowed outside the house without wearing a helmet.

      October 24, 2012 at 9:51 am | Report abuse |
  15. bettefw

    Terribly misleading headline, implying the fleeing caused the firing.

    October 24, 2012 at 9:51 am | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      Agreed. This is a non-story. People get fired every day for violating company policy.
      Cmon CNN, need to dig a little deeper for our feigned outrage.

      October 24, 2012 at 10:49 am | Report abuse |
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