OGDEN (ABC4 Utah News) -It was a ghoulish sight on the graveyard shift.
Ogden Police say that Tuesday morning a scythe wielding man walked into the Maverik at 689 Washington Boulevard and threatened to kill cashier Malisa Giles but it wasn’t the Grim Reaper. The suspect is 39 year old Michael Just, a customer that Giles knows well.
“Michael has been a customer of mine for the past three years. He suffers from schizophrenic episodes,” Giles told ABC4 Utah News. “Two months ago he was kicked out of the store for busting a coworker’s window so he can no longer be on the property at all.”
He had caused a disturbance at the store hours a few hours earlier but this time the homemade sickle-type weapon said he meant business.
“Being that he came through the door with a weapon I knew he was not in his right mind at all,” Giles said. “I just kept on thinking about my kids because I’m a single mom so I was frightened just because I was like ‘If something happens to me where are they going to go?'”
Malisa ran to the back office and called 9-1-1.
“He just walked in with a scythe and he’s walking out but he’s got a scythe on him,” Giles told the Weber County dispatcher. “It’s a long stick with a blade on top of it like the Grim Reaper carries. Oh my gosh!”
Mr. Just left the store and the Ogden Police SWAT team later found him and the weapon inside his house a block away, according to Ogden Police Lieutenant Tim Scott.
“After the SWAT operation and his surrender into custody he was charged with aggravated assault, trespassing at the store, damage to a vehicle in the parking lot which he damaged with the scythe as he was leaving and criminal trespassing,” Lt. Scott said.
Malisa told ABC4 Utah News she plans to continue working the overnight shift here. As for Michael, she wants to see him get the help he so obviously needs.
“I want to see him get some psychological help,” Giles said. “I want the mental health to step up in Utah and start getting these people the help that they need. Not just throwing them back on the streets when the system’s done with ’em.”
Lt. Scott told ABC4 Utah News that Mr. Just will likely receive a mental health evaluation.