WASHINGTON TWP., New Jersey -- A waitress chasing a group of customers who skipped out on their bill at a New Jersey restaurant was abducted and assaulted Saturday night, and police are searching for multiple suspects wanted in connection with the incident.
It happened around 11:15 p.m. at the Nifty Fifty's in Turnersville.
Police say the 20-year-old waitress was taken away in a vehicle and assaulted after she confronted the group of five who left without paying for their $70 meal.
"They're having trouble finding wait staff due to the pandemic, and she came out to confront them," Washington Township Police Chief Patrick Gurcsik said.
Surveillance video obtained exclusively by sister station Action News in Philadelphia shows the horrifying moment the waitress was abducted.
"They pulled her into the vehicle and assaulted her inside the vehicle," Gurcsik said.
Video shows one person bolt out of the vehicle, and then the group drives away with the waitress inside.
"The vehicle headed north on Route 42, made a U-turn and was heading south towards Monroe Township, and pushed her out of the vehicle," Gurcsik said.
Police said the woman was able to run back to the restaurant and call police.
She suffered bruises and a possible concussion, and she was taken to a local hospital and has since been released.
John Hill, an employee at the restaurant, said he was shocked.
"Say it ain't so," Hill said. "As an employee, that makes me feel bad. And mad."
Customers who heard the news Sunday night were also shaken up.
"This is such a family restaurant," Lindenwold resident Stacie Garris-Oliver said. "This is crazy."
The suspects were last seen driving in a newer model white Dodge Durango on Rt. 42 south near Monroe Township.
Police said employees should try to take down the license plate of customers who dine without paying and call authorities.
"Do not chase after accused suspects and confront them yourselves," Gurcsik said.
Anyone with information is asked to call police at 856-589-0330 ext 1160 or you can email tips to Det. M.Longfellow at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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