PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – This is a walk Kimberly Strawn always enjoyed, from her Sharpsburg home to her night shift job at the local Circle K.

Now, all the five minute walk does is get her heart racing – the tears flowing.

“I was dedicated to my job,” Strawn said. “I liked my job and it hurts.”

It was last Tuesday, going into Wednesday, around 12:45 a.m., Strawn was doing what she calls side-work and working alone.

“The customer had come in and stopped at the sandwich warmer,” she said. “I said, ‘excuse me, can I help you?’ He had his gun in his pocket and is shaking at me (saying), ‘I’ll shoot, I’ll shoot.’”

She continued, saying the suspect told her, “If you value your life, value your family, come empty the register.”

The suspect grabbed a Circle K bag, threw a couple hundred dollars in it from the cash register and took off.

“I was scared, yes,” she said.

The police showed up and Strawn told her story, went home and was fired the next day. It floored her, she desperately needs the work.

“It means the world to me, it’s my income,” she said. “It’s my income to take care of my responsibility to raise my son, to pay my bills.”

A spokesman for Circle K told KDKA that Strawn was fired for violating a very strict “cash drop policy” and that “employees are discharged for violating those policies,” adding that “this is a very serious employee safety issue.”

In other words, Strawn didn’t take the cash from the register and put it into a store safe when she was supposed to.

Strawn said the register failed and didn’t tell her to make the cash drop.

Strawn says it’s not always accurate and sometimes it will prompt her to make a cash drop at inconsistent dollar amounts.

A spokesman for Circle K told KDKA that they will send technicians to the Sharpsburg store to determine if there are technical problems with that machine. If it turns out there is a problem, they will reevaluate Strawn’s termination.

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