Police: Clerk at South Carolina ‘Obama’ Gas Station Shot at Customer During Argument

Obama gas station

Police have now charged the clerk at the Obama gas station in Columbia, South Carolina, for shooting a customer.

After a two-week investigation of the shooting, which occurred on June 9, police charged store clerk Antar Daralhaj, 20, with Assault and Battery of a High and Aggravated Nature and Possession of a Weapon during the Commission of a Violent Crime, according to a statement from the Columbia Police Department.

The story was originally reported that the clerk had prevented a robbery. Police now say the story is a little different than first imagined.

Daralhaj allegedly shot the customer after a verbal altercation concerning an overcharge on a gasoline purchase. Police said the customer became verbally abusive toward the clerk and at one point even walked behind the counter to yell at Daralhaj. But, when the customer turned to walk out of the establishment, police say Daralhaj grabbed a pistol and fired hitting the customer in the lower body. The wound was not life-threatening.

The clerk was booked at the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center.

Daralhaj was a clerk at the gas station that changed its name to “Obama” in 2011 when its owner, Sam Alhanik, said he heard of a similar gas station name change in Michigan. At the time the Yemen-born Alhanik told Live5News that Obama is “the first president of black people. It’s our president. We like him.”

Alhanik spent $4,000 on the name change and the redesign of the signage and building. “I think it’s a good marketing tool,” he added.

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.