NORMAN, Okla. (KFOR) — Employees at a Norman restaurant are demanding action, after one of them was stabbed on the job by a homeless man. Brady Sexton owns Scratch Kitchen & Cocktails and said his restaurant has been open since 2013, but has started to see an increase in crime in the past few years.
“We’re ready to start pushing for that hard core and not stop until something changes,” said Brady Sexton, the owner of Scratch Kitchen & Cocktails.
Last Thursday, Norman police got a call that an employee was stabbed just after 8pm.
Once officers got inside the restaurant and began talking to the employee and the witnesses, they learned that the suspect had entered the business, had stood beside the bar area of the restaurant,” said Sarah Schettler, the PIO for Norman Police.
Police said the man used a sharpened toothbrush to strike the employee’s back after someone asked if he needed help.
“He and some others quickly, you know, got this guy by the arms and dragged him outside. They called the police, told him which way he went,” said Sexton.
Norman police arrested 28-year-old Jaspen Evans.
It’s Evans’s second arrest since September, when police said he was taken into custody for stabbing someone with a screwdriver.
Evans is homeless, and business owners told News 4, that’s been a common theme in recent crime downtown.
“This shelter opened three years ago, right in the middle of downtown. I mean, it’s a block away and that’s when everything started to escalate,” said Sexton.
With the holiday season just around the corner, Sexton said he wants to see something change to keep customers and employees safe. He also told News 4, he’s not alone in wanting to see something happen.
“The fact that so many business owners are calling me, texting me, sending me videos, all downtown business owners of things that they have just been, you know, kind of biting their tongue because they don’t want to put a bad light on their business around downtown,” said Sexton.
Norman police said they’re going to continue watching the downtown area as much as they can to prevent things like this from happening. In the meantime, Sexton said he has plans to add cameras outside the restaurant.