An Illinois Subway worker claims she was suspended after defending herself against an armed robber.
Speaking with Fox 8 Araceli Sotelo said employers told her she could not return to work until surveillance leaked footage of the scuffle, which shows her fighting the robber and grabbing his gun, was taken down— something that Sotelo has "no ability to do."
"I get a call yesterday it was like, 'if every one of these videos are not taken offline you will be suspended,' and then I texted them and I’m like 'how long am I suspended for?' They said till everything is removed online. I have no ability to do that," she recently told the outlet.
The robbery in question took place on Sept. 5 at the restaurant located at 1120 East State Street in Rockford. Sotelo recalled a masked man walking into the venue with a gun and demanding money.
"He kind of just showed me his gun, and I was like freaking out like, 'woah you can’t do that please leave,'" she said. "He said 'give me all the money' and I said 'I do not have any money, like, I do not have any money.' That is all I had and he was just like, 'give me everything before I hurt you.'"
Sotelo fought back after he grabbed her purse.
"He was smaller than me, so I have that advantage. I’m bigger than him, so I could at least put my weight on him, push him, or something," she continued, explaining that the man's gun dropped during the struggle.
"He dropped it trying to hold onto my purse, and I end up pulling his sweatshirt off him and I was like 'show your face, show your face, you are on camera' and he was like 'here you can have your purse back just give me back my stuff.' He wanted me to give him back his gun and his clothes," she said. "I just hit him on the head with it, that is what he was doing to me."
Sotelo told Fox 9 that she had not been the one to leak the video on social media. Now the restaurant's owner is reportedly ignoring her.
"They did not want anyone to know, they wanted to be private that it happened to me and that I fought back, but I think they did that because they do not want corporate to know," she said. A GoFundMe page has now been set up to raise funds for attorney fees and to cover Sotelo's lost wages. As of Monday morning, $15,156 has been donated. The owner did not comment to the media.
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