Good Samaritan killed after picking up tabs at Waffle House

A good Samaritan picking up people's tabs and giving out money at a Florida Waffle House was shot dead Sunday in a fight that seems to have been sparked by his generous gestures, officials said.

Craig Brewer, 41, was shot in the head and killed at about 3 a.m. during an "altercation" at a Gainesville Waffle House, according to a statement from the Alachua County Sheriff's Office.

The suspected shooter, Ezekiel Hicks, 25, was arrested at the scene.

RELATED: Waffle House shooting in Nashville, TN

23 PHOTOS
Waffle House shooting in Nashville, Tennessee
See Gallery
Waffle House shooting in Nashville, Tennessee
NASHVILLE, TN - APRIL 22: Law enforcement stand outside a Waffle House where four people were killed and two were wounded after a gunman opened fire with an assault weapon on April 22, 2018 in Nashville, Tennessee. Travis Reinking, 29, of Morton, IL, is person of interest in the shooting and is suspected to have left the scene naked. (Photo by Jason Davis/Getty Images)
Suspected shooter Travis Reinking, 29, of Morton, Illinois
A police vehicle sits parked at the scene of a fatal shooting at a Waffle House restaurant near Nashville, Tennessee, U.S., April 22, 2018. Metro Nashville Police Department/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY
Metro Davidson County Police inspect the scene of a fatal shooting at a Waffle House restaurant near Nashville, Tennessee, U.S., April 22, 2018. REUTERS/Harrison McClary TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Metro Davidson County Police inspect the scene of a fatal shooting at a Waffle House restaurant near Nashville, Tennessee, U.S., April 22, 2018. REUTERS/Harrison McClary
The truck of Travis Reinking, the suspected shooter, is loaded on a trailer ready to be towed from the scene of a fatal shooting at a Waffle House restaurant near Nashville, Tennessee, U.S. April 22, 2018. REUTERS/Harrison McClary
Metro Davidson County Police inspect the truck of Travis Reinking, the suspected shooter, at the scene of a fatal shooting at a Waffle House restaurant near Nashville, Tennessee, U.S. April 22, 2018. REUTERS/Harrison McClary
Metro Davidson County police search the apartment complex where Waffle House shooting suspect, Travis Reinking, reportedly lives near Nashville, Tennessee, U.S. April 22, 2018. REUTERS/Harrison McClary
Metro Davidson County police and ATF agents search the apartment complex where Waffle House shooting suspect, Travis Reinking, reportedly lives near Nashville, Tennessee, U.S., April 22, 2018. REUTERS/Harrison McClary
Metro Davidson County police search the apartment complex where Waffle House shooting suspect, Travis Reinking, reportedly lives near Nashville, Tennessee, U.S. April 22, 2018. REUTERS/Harrison McClary
Metro Davidson County police search the apartment complex where Waffle House shooting suspect, Travis Reinking, reportedly lives near Nashville, Tennessee, U.S. April 22, 2018. REUTERS/Harrison McClary
Metro Davidson County police search the apartment complex where Waffle House shooting suspect, Travis Reinking, reportedly lives near Nashville, Tennessee, U.S. April 22, 2018. REUTERS/Harrison McClary
Metro Davidson County police search the apartment complex where Waffle House shooting suspect, Travis Reinking, reportedly lives near Nashville, Tennessee, U.S. April 22, 2018. REUTERS/Harrison McClary
Metro Davidson County police search the apartment complex where Waffle House shooting suspect, Travis Reinking, reportedly lives near Nashville, Tennessee, U.S. April 22, 2018. REUTERS/Harrison McClary
Metro Davidson County Police escort a man to his car at the scene of a fatal shooting at a Waffle House restaurant near Nashville, Tennessee, U.S., April 22, 2018. REUTERS/Harrison McClary
Metro Davidson County Police inspect the scene of a fatal shooting at a Waffle House restaurant near Nashville, Tennessee, U.S., April 22, 2018. REUTERS/Harrison McClary
Metro Davidson County Police inspect the scene of a fatal shooting at a Waffle House restaurant near Nashville, Tennessee, U.S., April 22, 2018. REUTERS/Harrison McClary
NASHVILLE, TN - APRIL 22: Law enforcement investigate the scene outside a Waffle House where four people were killed and two were wounded after a gunman opened fire with an assault weapon on April 22, 2018 in Nashville, Tennessee. Travis Reinking, 29, of Morton, IL, is person of interest in the shooting and is suspected to have left the scene naked. (Photo by Jason Davis/Getty Images)
NASHVILLE, TN - APRIL 22: Law enforcement investigate the scene outside a Waffle House where four people were killed and two were wounded after a gunman opened fire with an assault weapon on April 22, 2018 in Nashville, Tennessee. Travis Reinking, 29, of Morton, IL, is person of interest in the shooting and is suspected to have left the scene naked. (Photo by Jason Davis/Getty Images)
NASHVILLE, TN - APRIL 22: Law enforcement stand outside a Waffle House where four people were killed and two were wounded after a gunman opened fire with an assault weapon on April 22, 2018 in Nashville, Tennessee. Travis Reinking, 29, of Morton, IL, is person of interest in the shooting and is suspected to have left the scene naked. (Photo by Jason Davis/Getty Images)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

Witnesses told deputies "that the victim was paying for meals and giving out money, and that devolved into a verbal and then physical altercation," said Lt. Brett Rhodenizer with the sheriff's office.

The Gainesville Sun reported that Brewer was picking up customers' tabs and handing out $20 bills, and a woman who was there with Hicks got angry because Brewer hadn't paid for her meal.

Hicks confronted Brewer and started arguing with him, and then left the restaurant to get a handgun, according to the Alachua County Sheriff's Office statement. Hicks went back inside, despite protests from a bystander, and started a physical fight with Brewer.

"As the fight continued, the suspect took the handgun from his pants and shot Brewer in the head," the statement said.

Deputies had already been called to the Waffle House to disperse a large crowd, but when they got there, they discovered a murder scene. Hicks was arrested shortly after the deputies arrived, according to the sheriff's department.

Hicks is being held without bail on charges of first-degree premeditated murder and carrying an unlicensed firearm, according to Alachua County Jail records.

An employee at the Gainesville Waffle House directed NBC News to Waffle House's corporate offices for comment. Messages left with corporate were not immediately returned.

Read Full Story

Sign up for Breaking News by AOL to get the latest breaking news alerts and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.