Police: Gun goes off in Cracker Barrel after diner drops it; 2 injured

Published: May. 7, 2023 at 10:50 PM MST
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WCCB) - A North Carolina man grazed by a bullet says he feels fortunate he’s still alive after police say a Cracker Barrel diner’s gun accidentally went off inside the restaurant.

John Sharrock enjoys eating breakfast at suppertime once a week at Cracker Barrel. In late April, he says he was talking to a waitress at a location in Charlotte, North Carolina, when suddenly, he heard a gun go off.

“I hear a loud pop, and I felt, like, a nick go across my neck. The waitress jumped back,” Sharrock said. “I look around to see where the noise was coming from, and I see a gentleman bend down. He’s picking up what looked to be a 9 millimeter.”

Sharrock says the man, later identified by police as 64-year-old Robert Prebble, was sitting at a table just a few feet away from him. While many patrons ducked and others raced for the door, Sharrock kept his eyes on Prebble.

“I didn’t have much time to think about too many things. I just kept my eye on him,” he said. “He’s bending slow. He seemed a little intoxicated.”

Sharrock says Prebble then slowly walked outside with the gun in hand, as if nothing had happened.

But when the suspect got out to the parking lot, Sharrock says another man, who looked to be in his upper 60s, tackled him. He says the people inside Cracker Barrel rushed over to the window to watch the two men wrestle in the parking lot, with Prebble still holding onto the gun.

“He drops it. They continue wrestling for a little bit, and the guy who tackled him, he goes and picks up the gun,” Sharrock said.

Sharrock says he watched the suspect walk toward a nearby motel, just as police arrived on the scene. Prebble eventually came back and turned himself in to officers.

Police say Prebble’s gun, a Colt 1911 MK4, accidentally went off after it fell out of his pocket and onto the floor inside Cracker Barrel. One man at the restaurant was shot in the leg, and first responders took him to the hospital.

Sharrock was grazed in the neck by the bullet.

“It was a fragment of a bullet. I still have a little scar left from it,” he said, adding that he feels “very fortunate” to be alive.

Prebble was given a citation. He is due in court in June.