Montco Woman Charged in Applebee’s Macing

Sure, that's one way to move to the front of the line …

The Pottstown Applebee's | Google Street View

The Pottstown Applebee’s | Google Street View

A Gilbertsville woman who inadvertently discharged a can of mace she was carrying in her purse inside an Applebee’s restaurant in Upper Pottsgrove has been charged with disorderly conduct for the incident last Sunday night. Twenty patrons of the place began coughing and choking after the mace went off, and the restaurant was evacuated.

“The whole restaurant, including myself, was choking, crying and couldn’t breathe,” one evacuee told the Pottstown Mercury. “I don’t know how it filled the whole room, though. Very weird.”

First responders were on the scene within minutes, and four macees were treated at the hospital. The macer, who’d been waiting in line, was one of the first to bolt; witnesses helped officials identify Jessica Moore, who said she initially panicked and fled.

She later returned to the scene, “extremely upset,” according to Upper Pottsgrove police chief Francis Wheatley, and confessed her culpability, though the pepper gas dispersal was accidental. She’s agreed to reimburse the restaurant $450 it lost in sales after some of the evacuated patrons never returned to pay their bills.

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