Worker fatally shot while taking out trash at Akron McDonald's identified

Police have no suspects in fast food killing

AKRON, Ohio - Police have identified the McDonald's employee in Akron who was fatally shot over the weekend.

Akron police said John Lehman, 28, was taking out the trash around 11 p.m. Saturday when he was confronted by a man near the back door of the restaurant.

Police received three dramatic 911 calls that night.

Caller 1: "One of my crew members has been shot, please send an ambulance…We didn't see it. We just heard ‘pop, pop, pop, pop.' Please send someone now."

Dispatcher: "He's not breathing. The cops just got here."

Caller 2: "We heard about four pops and went back to check on him. He's lying on the ground."

Lehman was shot several times and died later at an Akron hospital.

The Summit County Medical Examiner said Lehman was shot three times, including a fatal shot to the torso, and ruled the death a homicide.

Friends of the victim, who live in the same apartment as Lehman, are stunned by the murder of a man who has no prior criminal record and was described as "an absolute sweetheart."

"I used to have a dog and he would bring her French fries every weekend. He would do anything for anybody. I don't understand how this happened. I really don't. None of us do," said Jessica Bodner.

Terry Zimmerman, who was Lehman's foster father when he was 16 to 18 years old, said Lehman was not the kind of guy to get into trouble.

"The world is going to miss a kid who loved music. He knew more about music than anybody in the world," Zimmerman said.

Police said a McDonald's security camera captured the victim falling to the ground behind the restaurant, but it does not show the shooting suspect.

The suspect is a medium complexioned black male, 22 to 27 years old, 5'7" - 5'10", 150 - 180 lbs., with a mustache, and was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt.  The suspect was seen in a dark colored SUV, possibly a Ford Expedition or a Cadillac Escalade with tinted windows.  The vehicle was last seen traveling southbound on Valley Street towards Crosby Street.

McDonald's released this statement Sunday afternoon:

"Our entire Rubber City McDonald's family is shocked by the tragedy at our West Market Street restaurant. We offer our prayers and sympathies to the family of the victim. The safety and well-being of our employees and customers is our top priority. We are cooperating with the police investigating this incident and defer any questions to them."

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Akron Police Department, Detective Bureau at 330-375-2490; the U.S. Marshals Service at 1-866-4WANTED; or the Summit County Crimestoppers Inc. at 330-434-COPS. Callers can remain anonymous.

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