Tags: pizza | delivery | demote | defend

Pizza Delivery Man Demoted for Fighting Off Thugs

Monday, 31 Dec 2012 01:01 PM

By Michael Mullins

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After being attacked and assaulted by a gang of teens, a Pizza Hut delivery man in Maryland has been demoted to a kitchen helper for using a "weapon" to defend himself.
While getting out of his car to deliver pizzas in a suburb of Baltimore, Sam Swicegood, 24, was attacked by five teens. He grabbed a tent stake he had in the backseat and began waving it around to keep his assailants at bay, though one thug was able to land a couple of punches in his face and on a shoulder.
"He sucker-punched me, my glasses flew off, I dropped the pizzas," the college student told Fox News. "Five people against one is not a good situation to be in . . . I thought that I was about to die."
His assailants fled without any money or pizzas, which Swicegood believes were the target of the attack.
Three of the assailants were later captured in the vicinity by police.
Because Swicegood defended himself with the fiberglas tent stake, Pizza Hut demoted him from a driver, cut his hours, and relegated him to the pizza kitchen for using what the company considered a "weapon" while working, a violation of Pizza Hut employment policy.
The police report didn't help Swicegood. An officer described the tent stake as a metal pipe or rod.
If he accepted the kitchen position, Swicegood would be making just minimum wage and none of the tips that come with pizza deliveries. He said it's not enough to keep up with his rent.
Swicegood told the Maryland Gazette he is looking for a new job.
Other companies also have strict weapons policies that often put their employees in difficult positions when they are forced to defend themselves on the job, according to Huffington Post. Devin McClean, an AutoZone employee, was fired earlier this year for thwarting a robber at work with his own personal weapon.
A Pizza Hut of Maryland representative refused to answer media inquiries on the matter.

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