Mcdonald’s Employee Gets 100 Years for Following and Stabbing Customer in Face and Neck

Image by: WCHS Network

A 32-year-old former McDonald’s employee in West Virginia will most certainly spend the rest of his life behind bars after following a 56-year-old client into the restaurant toilet, stabbing him many times in the face and neck, then stealing his wallet and leaving him bleeding.

Circuit Court Judge Kenneth D. Ballard sentenced Richard W. Thornton to 100 years in a state penitentiary facility on Monday for first-degree robbery in the unprovoked attack, according to papers obtained by Law&Crime. Ballard credited Thornton with 492 days previously served.

Before imposing the formal sentence, Ballard chastised Thornton for the nasty act.

“You attacked a stranger in the bathroom of the McDonald’s completely unprovoked,” Ballard said, according to West Virginia MetroNews. “After stabbing him several times in the face and neck, you grabbed his wallet. He had to be hurried to the hospital to be treated for these potentially fatal stab wounds.”

Thornton’s “history of extreme violence,” according to the judge, necessitated such a lengthy prison sentence.

“Over the years you’ve threatened and chased family members with hatchets and with knives, also EMS workers,” Ballard allegedly stated. “Because you are obsessed with knives and your history of extreme violence, I believe you pose a serious threat to our community and are likely to re-offend if released. “I have to protect this community.”

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According to the Kanawha County Sheriff’s Office, deputies rushed to the McDonald’s restaurant at 105 Crossings Mall in Elkview, West Virginia, around 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023, for reports of a customer being stabbed and robbed in the bathroom. Deputies were told that the suspect, later identified as Thornton, was an employee who fled the scene on foot.

The person was brought to the Charleston Area Medical Center (CAMC) General Hospital for treatment of “serious facial injuries and stab wounds to the neck,” according to lawandcrime.

An investigating deputy found Thornton at a nearby Speedway and arrested him. Thornton was still in possession of the victim’s wallet and a “bloody fixed blade knife,” according to the sheriff’s office, when he was arrested.

Thornton was on probation at the time of the stabbing after a 2019 incident in which he drew a knife and attempted to attack a paramedic while being carried to a hospital in an ambulance. Thornton was apprehended after being spotted on the side of the road “behaving like someone under the influence of drugs.” He informed authorities he was using methamphetamine and bath salts at the time.

Thornton was found guilty of attempted malicious injuring of emergency service personnel following the 2019 incident.

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