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Pastor Allegedly Attacked and Tried to Deep Fry Wife’s Coworker

By Liz Lykins

A pastor allegedly attacked an employee in a McDonald’s in High Point, North Carolina, last Thursday, and tried to put the employee’s head in a deep fryer, police say. Dwayne Waden, 57-year-old pastor at Elevated Life International Church in High Point, has been charged with assault and battery, according to the police arrest report.

Waden’s wife, who was a manager-in-training at the McDonald’s, called Waden on Thursday evening and complained that employees were “disrespecting” her, according to a police report. Waden then came to his wife’s workplace.

There, he reportedly wrapped his hands around the neck of an employee and pushed his head towards a deep fryer, punching him in the face “several times,” according to the police report. Several employees were needed to pull Waden off the victim, the report added. 

The victim received a large contusion to the forehead and right eye, along with scratches on his neck from the assault, the report stated.

Waden’s wife is no longer employed by McDonald’s, according to CBS News. A spokesperson for the local franchise told CBS that, “The safety and security of our employees and customers is our top priority.”

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mcdonald's deep fry
McDonald’s on S. Main St. in High Point, North Carolina. (Photo: social media)

Officers were able to watch surveillance video footage of the altercation, which led to the arrest of Waden, according to the report.

Waden, however, shared his side of the story with the news station WFMY News 2. Waden said his wife had been repeatedly disrespected and mistreated by the victim since she had started working at the fast-food restaurant in May 2023. He said she had reported it to supervisors several times.

The day of the incident, Waden said his wife called him because she was being harassed by an employee. Waden said he then came to the restaurant, told his wife to grab her stuff, clock out, and leave.

“She went to the back to get her keys,” Waden told WFMY News 2. “When she went to the back to get her keys, a gentleman came from behind, which was a manager, mouthing off at me and disrespecting my wife. I approached him and said, ‘What you’re not going to do is disrespect my wife in front of me.’”

Waden said the altercation that followed didn’t exactly happen as police described it.

“When I did that, he got in my face,” Waden told the news station. “When he got in my face I pushed him. And when I pushed him, he grabbed me. So when he grabbed me, we went to tussling and stuff of that nature and the floor was real slippery. So I kind of bear hug him, and when I bear hug him, he punched me in the back of my head. When he punched me in the back of my head, I commenced to swinging.” 

“My intent was to get my wife, and leave, and get out of that environment,” Dwayne added. 

Waden expressed that he regrets how far things went. 

“This is a learning experience going forward. Don’t let people pull you into their chaos moving forward — just walk away,” he said. 

Waden, who also lists himself as a semi-truck driver on his Facebook profile, was later released from jail after posting the $1,000 bond. He is scheduled to appear in court on Jan. 22, according to the arrest report.

Waden attended Shaw University Divinity School, according to his Facebook page. He regularly posts spiritual messages on Facebook and shares videos of his sermons at Elevated Life.

The High Point police department’s arrest of Waden happened less than two weeks before the agency is scheduled to host a “coffee with a cop event” in the same McDonald’s where the altercation occurred. The event is still scheduled to happen as planned on Jan. 9, a High Point police spokesperson told The Guardian.

Freelance journalist Liz Lykins writes for WORLD Magazine, Christianity Today, Ministry Watch, and other publications.



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2 Responses

  1. Next sermon will be based on Matthew 21:12-13 and titled: “How to Be Like Jesus, Turnt the Other Cheek, and Clock Your Enemies.”

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