Police identify suspect in W. Phila. coffee attack
WEST PHILADELPHIA - May 10, 2012 (WPVI) -- Philadelphia Police have identified the man caught on camera throwing hot coffee on a donut shop clerk.
Police say the assault inside a donut shop happened because of a dispute over the payment of a $2 sandwich.
RELATED: Watch the surveillance video
It was a jaw-dropping moment caught on camera.
Police say the screams could be heard on the video Tuesday morning after a well-dressed man with the mustache threw a cup of hot coffee on a worker inside Fresh Donuts at 3914 Lancaster Avenue.
Police have identified the man throwing coffee as David Timbers, 52, of the 3700 block of Haverford Avenue in Philadelphia.Moments after the surveillance video aired on Action News of an angry customer throwing hot coffee on a worker at Fresh Donuts in West Philadelphia, police say they received tips leading them to Timbers. Several people told Action News they spoke with the suspected coffee thrower on the phone, each telling him to turn himself in. "He must have lost his temper or something," said Duane Gordon. "I've never seen him like that before." It didn't take long for Gordon, Timbers' former landlord, to recognize him. Investigators say Timbers thought he had already paid for his sandwich inside the Lancaster Avenue business Tuesday morning. So when the clerk, 27 year old Sok Caea, asked him to pay up, he lost it. Police say Timbers went on a profanity-laced rant before prying the coffee out of a worker's hands and throwing it on her, severely burning her arm. "It's a shocking case where you have a guy who's clearly arguing over a $2.25 sandwich, and then he decides to throw coffee on this poor lady who is doing nothing but trying to work," said Lt. Johnny Walker. His former neighbors and Gordon were able to get him on the phone Friday evening. "I told him the best thing to do is turn yourself in because he can't run anywhere," said Gordon. "I think he had remorse, because he knows he got himself in trouble." Those who spoke with Timbers say he plans to turn himself in over the weekend with his attorney. Police would like him in custody much sooner. Speaking through a translator Tuesday, Sok Caea told Action News that she was doing fine.
The woman moved from Cambodia last year and is working in the donut shop part time to see if she would want to start her own business. After her experience with this customer, her translator told us she's thinking twice.
"I think it's just senseless over a sandwich, and then you hurt people like that, it's just not right," said co-worker Van Eap.
philadelphia, assault, west philadelphia, caught on camera, local/state
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