Restaurant Owner, Customers Hold Robbery Suspect For Police

By: WOWT Email
By: WOWT Email

A woman trying to rob an Omaha restaurant Wednesday afternoon was wrestled to the floor by the owner and two customers who held her for police.

Twenty-one-year-old Nicole Stewart entered the China Palace near North 46th and California streets around 12:30 p.m. and demanded money while keeping her hand inside her coat.

Restaurant owner Steve Zhang told us she, “says open your drawer. Give me your money.”

Zhang did not believe the woman had a gun so he grabbed a knife that he keeps behind the counter. “Just normally a kitchen knife you slice carrots or something like that," he said. "That’s my secret. But right now, everybody knows that.”

Steve's wife Diane was also working at the time. She noticed what was going on and rushed over to help

“I’m scared that my husband get hurt,” she said.

Knife in hand, Steve came out from behind the counter and confronted the would-be robber

He said, “I tried to grab her hand right here, you know what I say? But I no want to stab her. Tried to just hold her.”

The woman ran for the door. She wrestled with Steve and began heading outside when two customers from the restaurant jumped in to help. One of Steve’s employees also get involved.

As the four men were trying to hold the woman down, she grabbed Steve’s knife by the blade.

“I think it’s dangerous,” Steve said. “I tell the guy she has the knife! She has knife! The guy says ‘give up your knife.’ Finally she surrenders and pushes out the knife.”

The group held her in the parking lot until police arrived about five minutes later.

Stewart was booked for robbery.

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