A Flowery Branch man was taken into custody Thanksgiving night at the Oakwood Steak n Shake after he allegedly waved a gun and threatened people with it.
Kentarias Gowans, 20, was an employee of the restaurant and was scheduled to work that day, however called in and said he was too intoxicated to work, according to Oakwood Police Lt. Todd Templeton.
Templeton said Gowans then showed up at the restaurant that evening anyway with the gun. Police responded within a minute to the call, Templeton said, and that they saw employees running from the business when they arrived.
Templeton said they quickly encountered Gowans, who still had the handgun in his hand. "Officers confronted him in front of the business, giving him verbal commands to drop the weapon," said Templeton. "Initially [Gowans] started to raise the weapon towards the officers, but then decided against that and then threw the gun to the ground."
Gowan appeared to still be intoxicated and Templeton said they were able to take him into custody with a brief struggle, in which Templeton said a taser had to be deployed.
Templeton said they were relieved that the situation didn't escalate into an officer-involved shooting.
"The officers that were in contact with him in the front of the business did an excellent job," he said. "This young man came very close to being critically injured due to his actions and the officers were able to avoid that situation having to occur by talking him down and were able to take him into custody without any shots being fired."
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation has investigated at least 80 officer-involved shootings in the state this year.
"We feel very fortunate things didn't have to take a different route, that this young man decided to drop the weapon when he did," Templeton said. "We're glad it didn't have to escalate any further."
Gowan is facing numerous charges, including aggravated assault against both civilians and police officers, one count of obstruction, a weapons violation charge, a public drunkenness charge and an underage drinking charge. More charges are expected, Templeton said. Whether or not Gowan had received bond was not immediately known.