Police: 1 dead at Phoenix restaurant after fight - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Police: 1 dead at Phoenix restaurant after fight

Posted: Updated:
Miguel A. Hernandez Miguel A. Hernandez
PHOENIX -

A popular downtown Phoenix restaurant turned into a crime scene Monday morning after a worker was found stabbed to death inside the kitchen.

It appears the victim, identified as 26-year-old Miguel A. Hernandez, was arguing with a fellow employee when the stabbing happened at the Tilted Kilt, located near 1st Street and Washington.

"A lot of us who work downtown are family.. go to each other's place of business, so the fact something could happen to our family is scare," said Stephanie Fairey.

Police say the fight between two men working in the kitchen broke out around 8:45 a.m. while employees were getting ready for the day. 

Nobody saw what happened, but other employees heard the commotion and when they went into the kitchen to see what was going on, they saw one man stabbed and on the floor, and another man with cuts on his arms.

Authorities say the man on the floor was dead when they arrived at the scene.  The other man, identified as 23-year-old Javier Romero, was treated at an area hospital and later booked into the Maricopa County Sheriff's office jail on one count of murder in the second degree and one count of aggravated assault on a police officer.

"Evidence and witness statements suggest that Romero attacked the victim this morning without provocation and then self inflicted the injuries he sustained," stated Phoenix Police Sgt. Trent Crump.

Crump added, "The suspect was combative with our officers throughout the day including an attempt to disarm one of our officers at the hospital while he was being treated."

This chaotic scene unfolded as people were going about their normal routines at the start of the workday.

"We just went to Breakfast Club.. everyone talking about it up there.. it is kind of crazy," said Catie Calhoun.  "Yeah, we had no idea what was going on.. nothing."

According to Crump, the victim's family stated that he worked at the restaurant since it opened.

The motive for the stabbing and Romero's behavior are still unknown.

Statement from Tilted Kilt:

"Tilted Kilt is saddened by the terrible tragedy that occurred at the Phoenix Pub the morning of November 25th.  We are grieving the loss of a valued long time employee. We are supporting the Phoenix Police Department in their ongoing death investigation.  Out of respect for the families involved and our employees, the Downtown Pub will be closed until Friday morning, November 29th at 11:00 am.  Our thoughts and prayers are with the family during this difficult time.  Additionally, Tilted Kilt is also working closely with our employees, offering grief counseling sessions as needed, as they deal with this tragic situation."

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