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RAYMOND, WI – A 37-year-old man was arrested Tuesday for previously demanding waffles from a food manufacturer and swinging a knife at a clerk.

Alberto Ramirez Jr., of Caledonia, is charged with disorderly conduct, use of a dangerous weapon by the Racine County Circuit Court. Ramirez has a previous conviction on his record. If convicted of this class B misdemeanor, he could be fined up to $1,000, imprisoned up to 90 days or both.

According to the criminal complaint, a deputy with the Racine County Sheriff’s Department was dispatched to Echo Lake Foods, 2319 Raymond Ave., at about 10:30 p.m. on Sept. 10 .

A store clerk told the responding deputy that a dark SUV came to the loading dock of the store around 9 p.m. A heavy-set, Hispanic man, later identified as Ramirez, was driving the SUV and told the clerk he used to work at the factory with a man named “Todd” who owed him money. Ramirez demanded waffles from inside the warehouse.

During the encounter, the clerk’s colleagues were also present. When personnel refused Ramirez the waffles he demanded, he drew a folding knife with a blade about four to five inches.

One of the workers went inside to call 911 after the knife was drawn. Ramirez grew agitated and got in the clerk’s face, demanding his name. He refused and told Ramirez he had one minute to leave the premises before calling the police, the complaint states.

Ramirez then swung the knife toward the upper part of the clerk’s collar bone, causing him to fear for his life. Witnesses could not agree if the blade was drawn or folded, though the clerk felt Ramirez meant to harm him.

Ramirez retreated to the SUV and drove off. The clerk was able to snap a grainy photo of the SUV, which bore a confederate flag sticker in the rear window, and part of its license plate.

An investigator later identified Ramirez as the suspect, who was a former employee at Echo Lake Foods. The investigator went to Ramirez’s home to speak with him about the incident, where Ramirez claimed the clerk and other store personnel were the ones who were making threats.

Ramirez admitted to driving to the store to find a guy he used to work with who owed him money. He also admitted to asking for waffles but denied having a knife, according to the complaint.

A folding knife consistent with the witnesses’ description was found in Ramirez’s SUV, whose license plate was also consistent with the photo taken at the crime scene.

Racine County Circuit Court Judge Robert Repischak released Ramirez on a $200 signature bond. He waived his right to a reading of the complaint. A status conference is scheduled at 8:30 a.m. Nov. 26.

Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.