Arby’s ex-employee, accused of throwing hot grease on customer, waives preliminary hearing

Victim said she is grateful for the concern and support from the community.
Shea Denise Peoples
Shea Denise Peoples(Jefferson County Sheriff's Office)
Published: Jun. 7, 2022 at 10:17 AM CDT
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HUEYTOWN, Ala. (WBRC) - The woman, and former Arby’s employee, accused of throwing hot grease on a customer at a drive-thru in Hueytown waived her right to a preliminary hearing.

Officers confirmed 50-year-old Shea Denise Peoples was charged with first-degree assault and reckless endangerment.

By signing her Waiver, the judge said the case will be sent to the Grand Jury for possible indictment.

A court order, filed in the Bessemer Division of Jefferson County District Court, said, “Defendant having filed a request to waive the preliminary hearing, the defendant is hereby held under $30,000.00 bond to await the action of the Grand Jury.”

Hueytown Police Chief Mike Yarbrough said an Arby’s employee “just snapped” when an interaction with a customer escalated on Saturday, April 23, 2022.

At the time Yarbrough said the female employee, “for lack of a better word, just snapped,” over a disagreement over a service of some sort.

Peoples is also facing a civil lawsuit from the victim, identified as Jameria Hairston by her attorney’s spokesperson.

Attorney G. Courtney French said Hairston was a customer at a drive-thru window, and she was in her car with her two young daughters.

“I am so grateful for the tremendous amount of support and concern from the community. Also, thank you to everyone who is assisting with the investigation,” Jameria Hairston said.

“Jameria Hairston, who is recovering from second degree burns, had two daughters ages 11 and 4 in the car with her,” said Attorney G. Courtney French. “Please continue to pray for healing for this family. My clients will seek all available remedies for this deplorable action to the fullest extent of the law,” French added.

Hairston was hospitalized for several weeks due to the severe burns over a large part of her body. Hairston was recently discharged but will require extensive medical treatment for the foreseeable future, according to her legal team.

Shea Denise Peoples
Shea Denise Peoples(Jefferson County Sheriff's Office)

An Arby’s spokesperson released the following statement: “The actions of the former employee in Hueytown, AL, were reprehensible. We immediately terminated the offender, and we are cooperating with the local authorities in their investigation. Our heart goes out to the guest, and we are working to help support their recovery.”

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