Photo: Stock Image
Written By: Jim Emerson
SAN RAFAEL — A warehouse worker with history of making threats of violence was in a tense standoff at a McDonalds restaurant. The suspect carried a knife, and he verbally and physically attacked customers. No serious injuries have been reported.
Robert M. Chernoff, 35, of Novato, was placed under arrest November 13. Chernoff was booked on open charges at Marin County Jail. Bond for his release from custody was set at $50,000.
San Rafael officers responded at 1:50 p.m. to a disturbance at the McDonalds restaurant on Merrydale Road. Customers and staff were evacuated because the suspect refused to drop a knife he was carrying.
With help from the Marin County Sheriff’s Office, a perimeter was set up surrounding the restaurant. Parts of Merrydale Road, Willow Avenue and Redwood Highway were closed, as police tried to convince the man to surrender himself.
After almost four hours, police warned that force might be used if he stayed uncooperative.
The suspect still refused to drop the knife. Moreover, he was becoming more agitated.
San Rafael police said in a prepared statement. “When the arrest team approached Chernoff, they were forced to use less-than-lethal munitions, and a police K9.”
The suspect and dog struggled. The dog bit Chernoff’s arm, before he was arrested at 5:23 p.m. It seems Chernoff grabbed the dog and held it in a head lock. He seemed to be choking the dog when officers subdued him with a stun gun.
Chernoff was booked for –
Assault with a deadly weapon-not firearm PC 245(A)(1)
Making criminal threats to terrorize PC 422
Battery PC 242
Assault on a police officer PC 240
Willful harm to a police officer dog PC 600(A)
Chernoff has spent time behind bars previously. Between 2014 and 2018, Chernoff was
arrested four times for threatening violence, and once for possession of a controlled substance.