Man to Wary Waitress: 'Do You Know Where the Nearest Church Is?'

Cops say an armed Tony Albert was on his way to 'fulfill a prophecy' in Texas
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 31, 2018 9:47 AM CST

(Newser) – A phone call from alert restaurant staff in Seguin, Texas, may have prevented a horrific crime at a local church by a man who cops say was headed to "fulfill a prophecy." The Houston Chronicle reports that 33-year-old Tony Albert was arrested Sunday morning on the street by cops who came across the "oddly dressed male wearing tactical style clothing" and "a surgical face shield" and carrying a loaded gun and additional ammunition, per police. Per KSAT, cops were alerted to Albert's presence after a "weirded-out" waitress at a Mexican restaurant noticed his odd demeanor and that he was sporting a weapon. Brianna Jimenez says Albert had come into Las Mañanitas wearing a mask and sunglasses and headed straight to the bathroom. When he emerged, he asked her, "Do you know where the nearest church is at?"

Jimenez mentioned a couple of churches, and as Albert was leaving she suddenly noticed he had a gun and was "gripping it, like, he has his finger on the trigger." Jimenez's mother, who owns the restaurant, called the cops once he'd left. The Chronicle, which notes that Albert was arrested on charges of firearm possession, as well as marijuana possession, adds that, per court filings, Albert claims to follow two different religions: a Messianic Judaic movement, as well as the First Church of Cannabis, which elevates marijuana as a healing plant. Albert, who has a lengthy criminal record—including convictions for DWI, assaulting a family member, and, perhaps not surprisingly, marijuana possession—was brought to Guadalupe County Jail, where he was being held on $100,000 bond. (Read more Texas stories.)

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