Customer shoots McDonald's manager over frappe order, police say

Argument leads to shooting at Altamonte McDonald's

By Emilee Speck - Digital journalist

ALTAMONTE SPRINGS, Fla. - The manager of a McDonald's restaurant in Altamonte Springs was shot Wednesday night after a dispute with a customer over a frappe he ordered, according to Altamonte police.

Police said the incident was reported at 11:11 p.m. at the McDonald's on State Road 436 near Interstate 4.

Freddy Alexander Hormazabal, 39, was upset about his coffee he ordered through the drive-thru and demanded a refund from the manager, police said.

"He actually tried to go inside and confronted the manager about the incident. The manager refunded him the money and told him that he needed to leave," Altamonte Springs Police Officer Evelyn Estevez said.

Police said the situation escalated and the manager told Hormazabal that he would call the police if he didn't leave, according to the report.

"All the witnesses were saying that he was being loud and irate and there were family members that had come in with him to try to calm him down," Estevez said.

The victim was attempting to escort Hormazabal off the premises when police say Hormazabal shot him in the neck.

Hormazabal drove off but later turned himself in to the Volusia County Sheriff's Office after authorities called him on his cellphone and urged him to surrender. 

"We were able to use the assistance of the family and the voice of reason with the family so he could turn himself in," Estevez said.

The manager was taken to Orlando Regional Medical Center for treatment. He has since been released.

Police said Hormazabal attended the Orlando City Soccer game before Wednesday night's shooting and was still wearing the team's jersey when he turned himself in. Authorities do not know if he was under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

It's also unclear if he had a concealed weapons permit.

Customers of the restaurant were shocked when they heard what happened.

"It's a little scary, unnerving that there are people that are furious over something like that. It's crazy," customer James McCann said.

McCann said he goes to this McDonald's all the time and his orders have been wrong before. He can't believe it escalated to this.

"I would never expect anything like that to happen. That's insane," McCann said.

McDonald's operations manager Holly Berthiaume released a statement about the shooting Thursday afternoon.

"We are shocked and saddened by this incident and send our heartfelt thoughts to our employee and his loved ones as he recovers at home," Berthiaume said. "The safety of our customers and our crew members is one of our top priorities. As this is an ongoing investigation, all inquiries are being directed to the Altamonte Springs Police Department."

Hormazabal is booked in the Volusia County jail on a first degree premeditated murder charge.

Authorities are asking anyone who might have additional information or video of the incident to call the Altamonte Springs Police Department at 407-339-2411 or Crimeline at 800-423-TIPS.

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