A suburban Delray Beach man was arrested Sunday after he allegedly beat an elderly man who was asking for money at a McDonald’s restaurant west of Boca Raton.
Robert Lorn Johansen is facing a charge of aggravated battery on a person 65 years or older. Johansen was released from the Palm Beach County Jail on Monday after posting a $3,000 bond.
Johansen initially portrayed himself as the victim in the attack, according to a Palm Beach County sheriff’s arrest report made public Monday. Johansen told deputies that he was eating with his family at the McDonald’s on Sandalfoot Plaza Drive, on the east side of State Road 7 north of Southwest 18th Street, when the elderly man asked him for money.
Johansen said the man followed him to the bathroom and asked for money again. When Johansen said no, the man lunged and reached into his back pocket, the report said. Johansen said he reacted by punching the man in the face, opening a 2-3 inch gash that required 15 stitches under his right eye, according to PBSO.
Deputies received a different story from the 66-year-old victim. The man said that Johansen called him into the bathroom, then pushed him against a wall and punched him repeatedly when he entered.
The arresting deputy noted in his report that the 28-year-old Johansen is “about 6-00 tall and about 25o lbs, (the victim) is a 66-year-old man about 5-4 tall and 14o lbs.”
Surveillance video at the restaurant supported the elderly man’s version of events, the report said. It shows the older man sitting at a table and asking people for money when Johansen walks by. A few seconds later, the victim can be seen motioning as if someone is asking him to come to the bathroom. The victim gets up and walks into the bathroom, the report said.
The elderly man, who was taken to West Boca Medical Center, told PBSO that he was hungry and thought Johansen was going to give him money.
“Approximately three minutes later, (Johansen) is seen walking out of the bathroom dragging (the victim) by his left arm and neck,” the report states.
Records show that Johansen has served two prison terms since 2008 in Florida for robbery and burglary to an occupied structure.