Would-be robber gets taste of own medicine

Would-be robber gets taste of own medicine »Play Video
Surveillance video shows a doctor, dressed in a dark shirt in the center, holding a gun to a man, wearing white in the bottom right corner of the video, who allegedly attempted to rob restaurant patrons twice.
TACOMA -- It was probably not the best idea to try and rob a bunch of restaurant patrons the first time. It turned out to be an even worse idea when he tried it the second time, only to have one patron turn the table on him.

Surveillance video at the restaurant captured the entire event.

The man was first seen sitting at a table at Tacoma's Pacific Grill.

"It's at that point that he asks if we have 'Mad Dog' or wants the Mad Dog," said Pacific Grill general manager Chip Venzone.

You just don't order fortified wine at an upscale restaurant like the Pacific Gril without setting off alarms. But then surveillance video shows John Meys get up from his table and go into a private dining room full of doctors and their wives.

"(He was) very menacing," said Dr. Charles Weatherby, who was in the room. "(He was) saying 'I want your wallets and cash now!' "

Dr. Weatherby thought it was a joke until Meys got rough with a fellow dinner guest.

“He grabs him by the neck and pulls him to the side, 'give me your wallet now,' " Weatherby said.

There was only $1 in the wallet, so Meys reportedly tossed it on the table.

Looking back on the tape, Venzone says: "For some reason he is spooked or something happens. He leaves the room walks back through this door."

What people here can't figure out is why the suspect came out of that private party and then came back to his table and sat down as if nothing had happened.

The chef, kitchen staff and other patrons surround the suspect. But then the video shows he got back up and went back for a second robbery attempt in that other room.

"He's at the door; we can't get out," Dr. Weatherby said. "If he has a gun, we're all dead."

Meys didn't have a gun, but one of the doctors did and decided to give the suspect some of his own medicine.

"Suddenly (the doctor) pulls a gun out and says, 'Get out of this room, now! In fact, get out of the restaurant now,' " Weatherby said.

The armed doctor led Meys outside where Tacoma police arrested him. He's now undergoing a mental evaluation.

"We are glad he had the gun," Weatherby said of that doctor. "He's our guardian angel."

Tacoma police say they're not pursuing action against the doctor for having a gun in a restaurant that serves alcohol. Meanwhile, the restaurant wants to give him ‘dinner on the house.’