Staff at a McDonald’s restaurant have been praised for coming to the aid of a woman who mouthed “help me” as she entered the drive-thru.
Police in California’s San Joaquin county said the woman, had entered the restaurant on Christmas Eve, and asked staff to call to help as she went to the lavatory.
She tried to place an order at the counter, but the man she was with allegedly told her she had to use the drive-thru facility.
When she did, she said “help me” to the staff on duty.
Shortly afterwards, police arrived, spoke to staff and were directed to the woman’s vehicle.
Police found a stolen firearm in the trunk of the vehicle and arrested the man, who has been identified as Eduardo Valenzuela.
Officers said Mr Valenzuela had a record of abusing the woman, who has not been named.
The channel said the the Golden State Restaurant Group, which owns the McDonald’s location where the incident took place, has certified each of its restaurants as a “Safe Place”.
The Safe Place programme is a national project for “young people in need of immediate help and safety”, according to the group’s website.
CNN said Mr Valenzuela had been charged with making criminal threats, possession of stolen property, and possession of a firearm.
His bail was set at $360,000. It was not immediately clear if he had a lawyer or had yet entered a plea.