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Man pulls gun to stop knife attack in NY Applebee’s

A holstered handgun. (Al Behrman/TNS)
January 17, 2023

A knife-wielding attacker who slashed an Applebee’s worker in the face over the weekend in New York surrendered after a customer pointed his gun at him.

The attacker, 28-year-old Esteban Padron, went to the ground, and the customer held him at gunpoint until police arrived, reported.

Padron entered the Applebee’s restaurant in New Hartford at 6:42 p.m. and started fighting with workers. The workers recognized him because he’d been forced to leave for disorderly behavior before, police said.

He went behind the bar, grabbed a steak knife and slashed a worker’s face with it. Police said another worker was also injured during the incident.

READ MORE: Gunman shoots cop, jumps from balcony, dies in shootout with police

That’s when a man eating at the restaurant pulled his gun on Padron and ordered him to get on the floor and let go of the knife.

Police said the gun-toting customer was licensed to carry the gun. But he may still have been in violation of a new state law banning guns from a list of “sensitive places,” including any establishment licensed to serve alcohol.

The law came into effect last year and had been partially reversed by legal challenges, but the Supreme Court ruled last week that it can stand while those challenges are pending, the New York Times reported.

It isn’t clear whether prosecutors intend to charge the Applebee’s gun owner with a crime. But the assistant pistol licensing officer in Oneida County, where the restaurant is located, offered his thoughts a similar hypothetical scenario last summer.

In an interview with local news outlet WKTV, the licensing officer, Dan Sullivan, was asked whether a licensed gun owner would be charged with a crime for neutralizing a shooter in a “sensitive place.”

“Yeah, the person will probably be charged with a class A misdemeanor,” Sullivan said. “I think under the circumstances, the charge would probably go away. That’s up to the district attorney’s office.”