A BB pellet may be stuck in a man’s neck for the rest of his life after he was shot by a woman with a BB gun in a North Side Chicago Starbucks Wednesday.
The man said he was sitting next to a woman in the middle of the afternoon at an Andersonville Starbucks when she unexpectedly opened fire.
“She was sitting right next to me so I was hit in the neck,” the victim, who wished to remain anonymous for safety concerns, said. “Of course everyone in Starbucks was standing up, staring at me, and somebody said, ‘You’re bleeding.’”
Police said they responded to a “mental health disturbance” just before 3:30 p.m. Wednesday in the 5300 block of North Clark Street. Authorities said a woman fired shots from a “pellet gun” leaving “several victims” wounded.
“Had it been a real gun we probably wouldn’t be talking today because she was standing about three feet away from me when she shot it,” the man said.
Reached by phone, a spokesperson for Seattle-based coffee chain said they would continue to work with law enforcement and the company's primary concern was with the injured.
“We are grateful that our partners acted quickly to help the injured customers and notify law enforcement,” they said.
Rich McMurray was in the coffee shop when the pellets began to fly.
“We heard a noise and everyone was kind of looking around,” he said. “I saw a couple people holding their neck—and everyone was just kind of shocked, it seemed like, and wasn’t really sure what happened.”
The 50-year-old victim who was shot in the neck said an x-ray determined the pellet was lodged and cannot be removed.
“It’s safer to leave the BB in my neck instead of performing surgery on my neck, which could be riskier,” he said.
The victim said that he’s not only grateful for his life, he’s also thinking of the woman involved.
“I don’t feel angry,” he said. “I feel like I just hope that she gets the help that she needs.”