Many people have memorable first days at a new job. Very few can say however that their first day involved being threatened by a man with a sword.
Mike Houseman tells NBC10 he had just been hired by the American Deli in the Villas section of Lower Township, New Jersey. He was working inside the shop along with his two new co-workers on Monday, around 6:40 p.m., when a man armed with a samurai sword stepped inside.
“When he came in he had a sword,” Houseman said. “He started threatening to chop us all up. He was gonna slice us up!”
According to investigators, the man had just left the deli after getting takeout but at some point lost his cell phone. Surveillance video from the store shows the man repeatedly threaten the employees that he would cut them with his sword if they didn’t find his phone.
At one point in the video, the man lunges towards Houseman with the sword. Houseman manages to move out of the way, narrowly avoiding the weapon.
“I got really nervous after that,” Houseman said.
As the suspect held his weapon towards Houseman’s neck, another deli worker, David Valle, says he eased his way to the back of the shop and called 911.
“It looked like he was getting ready to jump over the counter,” Valle said.
The suspect never got the chance to however. Lower Township Police quickly responded to the scene. The three workers managed to escape unharmed through the back of the deli while an officer confronted the suspect, according to investigators.
The man dropped the sword and was taken into custody.
Police later identified the suspect as 43-year-old Ryan Crump. He was arrested and charged with aggravated assault, terroristic threats and other related offenses. He was lodged in the Cape May County Correctional Center with bail set at $35,000 cash.