Teens trying to dine and dash drive off with employee on car hood, police say

Police in Ohio say a dangerous chase ensued after a group of teenagers ran out on their bill at Buffalo Wild Wings. (WEWS, WILLOUGHBY POLICE DEPARTMENT, CNN)
Published: Nov. 23, 2022 at 3:40 AM EST

WILLOUGHBY, Ohio (WEWS) - Police in Ohio say a dangerous chase ensued after a group of teenagers allegedly ran out on their bill at Buffalo Wild Wings.

Kayla Sherman was working at Buffalo Wild Wings about 9:30 p.m. Sunday in Willoughby, Ohio. Police say that’s when three teenagers came in, asked for a table and ordered food to go. When the food came, the teens allegedly left without paying the $115 bill.

Sherman says the manager ran out the front door after the teens in an attempt to get their license plate information for police. She followed him.

“The manager tried to get the registration off the back of the vehicle. The rear passenger removed the temporary tag from the rear window,” said Willoughby Police Detective Lt. John Begovic.

Sherman and another employee were near the suspects’ car when police say the 16-year-old female driver started driving, knocking Sherman onto the hood of the white BMW. She took off, with Sherman trying to hang on.

“They’re yelling at me, saying, ‘I have a gun in the vehicle.’ They had a sunroof… and they were throwing things out of the sunroof at me,” Sherman said.

Another employee was hanging onto the door of the car, and Sherman says he got dragged. He let go of the car in the shopping plaza’s parking lot.

In police dash cam video, Sherman can be seen hanging on to the car in the parking lot, but the situation got worse when police say the driver turned onto the street by a busy intersection and started driving at speeds of up to 60 miles per hour.

“It was just absolutely one of the most terrifying moments of my life,” Sherman said. “At one point, they said, ‘We’ll just take you on the highway’ and laughed about it, knowing that my body would completely not be able to hold on going that speed.”

Police say the officer first tried to stop the teen driver, but she kept going. He realized it was too dangerous and turned his lights off in hopes the driver would slow down.

When the driver turned onto a side street, Sherman was able to get off the car. The dash cam video shows her walking up to the officer, who helps her into a warm patrol car.

Police say as officers with Wickliffe Police arrived on scene, the driver tried eluding them, as well, but got stuck in a snow mound.

The 16-year-old driver and her two 17-year-old friends were arrested. All three face charges, the driver’s a felony charge.

“Nothing surprises me anymore. Just when you think you’ve seen it all, something else comes up,” Begovic said.

He says police are grateful no one was seriously injured during the incident.