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Restaurant workers confronted gunman after he killed multiple people in Denver and Lakewood

Police credit two employees at Ted's Montana Grill in Lakewood for saving lives that night.

LAKEWOOD, Colo. — Five months after a shooting spree in Denver and Lakewood left five people dead, two restaurant workers are sharing why they confronted the gunman.  

Police said the man had already killed four people before he stopped at Ted's Montana Grill in the Belmar shopping center. He would later go on to kill one more. 

Israel Ontiveros-Platt, a bartender, chose to work late that night. It was busy, and she had a feeling that she needed to stay. 

"I had that gut feeling that I was supposed to stay, and because I stayed, nothing happened here," she said.

RELATED: Tattoo artists, hotel clerk among 5 killed, 2 injured in shooting spree

Ontiveros-Platt stayed at the restaurant long enough for a man with a gun to walk behind her bar. She said he was wearing a vest with "police" written on the front. According to Onviteros-Platt, he picked up a glass and poured himself a pint of bourbon. She said he drank most of it.

She believes the restaurant wasn't targeted like his other stops that night, but that he only stopped at Ted's Montana Grill for a drink.

"For me, he knew those were his last moments," Ontiveros-Platt said. 

She had no idea how dangerous he really was when she tried to kick him out to keep everyone safe. 

"He threw the glass at my feet and he pulled his gun on me," she said. "When he pulled his gun on me I didn't even flinch."

A customer in a booth started recording the confrontation behind the bar. The video shows the man pointing a gun at Ontiveros-Platt. Then a coworker, Kevin Hall, stepped in front of the gun to protect her. 

"She's been one of my closest friends for almost a decade now," Hall said. "I am not going to lie. I thought when it came down to it I would be the one ducking under a table."

Hall feels incredibly lucky to be alive, and he feels grateful for the other coworkers who also stepped in to help.

"I am just so blessed we had so many people here that day that had our backs, ready to do what we had to do to protect everyone here," he said. 

Hall didn't put himself in danger for any recognition. Ontiveros-Platt calls him her hero. 

"He literally put his life on the line for me and I think that is pretty amazing," she said.

The man eventually left without firing a single shot. The choices made by these employees allowed people at the restaurant to go home when others that night couldn't do the same. 

RELATED: First responders, civilians honored for bravery during crime spree in Denver and Lakewood

The gunman was later confronted by a Lakewood police officer, who shot and killed him. 

Ontiveros-Platt and Hall returned to work the next day. They felt it was important to go back, and not allow a hateful person to ruin a place they both love so much.

RELATED: Lakewood officer who stopped shooting spree speaks publicly for the first time

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