A Penny Saved Is A Sentence Earned

, , , , | Legal | October 22, 2020

I started working nights at this gas station around three years ago. I quickly learned that if I wasn’t tough, the customers in the area would try to abuse me to no end, so I developed a thick skin pretty quickly and often can come off as rude or uncaring to some, but I try to be fair to all.

A known problem customer enters the store.

Customer #1: “Hey, man, can I get a [Brand] [flavor] cigar?”

Me: “Sure.”

I turn and casually grab the cigar and scan it.

Me: “That’ll be $1.26.”

Customer #1: “Yeah, okay, dude.”

He places $1.25 on the counter and reaches for the cigar. I quickly pull the cigar back and he snaps his head up, looking PISSED.

Customer #1: “The f***? Give me my cigar, man!”

Me: “Yeah, that’s not enough, man. You’re short by a cent.”

Yes, I know it’s only a penny. I know most people would just let him have it to be rid of him. But as said earlier, he is a known problem customer and this is the fourth time he’s pulled this trick this week, let alone how many times he’s done something similar this month, so I’m at the end of my rope with him.

Customer #1: “F*** off, man. Just give me the friggin’ cigar and let me leave.”

Me: “Not until you pay full price.”

The customer then starts ranting about how I’m being a child, it’s only a penny, the other guy lets him do it, etc. I don’t say anything and let him vent for about two minutes until I notice a second customer waiting to actually buy something behind him.

Me: “Look. I don’t have time to play this game. I have other people waiting.”

I put the cigar back and push his money across the counter back to him.

Me: “We’re done here. I’m not serving you tonight.”

Then, I wave [Customer #2] forward. [Customer #1] sputters for a bit.

Customer #1: “MAN, F*** YOU!” *Storms out*

Customer #2: “Uh… Will you be okay? He doesn’t seem stable.”

Me: “I’ll be fine. It’s not the first time he’s acted like this. He’ll just leave and be back tomorrow.”

I was very wrong. About an hour later, he peels back into our lot and storms into our store.

Customer #1: “You’re gonna give me that cigar. And you know what? A pack of [Cigarettes], too. No, make it a carton, you c***. And I ain’t paying for S***, ‘CAUSE F*** YOU, B****. 

Slightly taken aback, I quickly hit the silent alarm to alert the cops.

Me: “Uh, yeah, no, that’s not happening. You need to leave before the cops get here.”

Customer #1: “Call them, you p***y. You can’t prove anything.”

[Customer #1] proceeded to run around the counter and try to shove me. I’m 6’7”. I don’t move easily. He quickly gave up and grabbed a couple of packs he could reach and ran out of the store. He got into his car just as the cops were pulling in. I signalled for them to follow him and they peeled out of the lot.

I later found out from one of the officers that he crashed his car and then tried to assault one of the officers when they arrested him. I think it will be pretty open and shut with our camera footage, but he wants to fight it in court.

A couple of months later, I was sitting in court waiting for him to show up when his lawyer got a call that he had been arrested the night before for assaulting a different gas station employee. Old habits die hard, I guess.

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