REPUBLIC, Mo. — On April 18, Republic Police Department officers were called to a Price Cutter to respond to a call about a robbery in which a man held an employee at gunpoint so that he would be served meat.

Larry Gene Gay, 70, of Springfield, is charged with one felony count of unlawful use of a weapon and a felony count of armed criminal action.

Court documents show that officers responded to the scene and ordered Gay to get out of his truck so they could arrest him. After he was taken into custody, an officer removed a loaded semi-automatic pistol with a bullet in the chamber from Gay’s hip holster.

In an interview, Gay said he went to Price Cutter to buy steaks. He told the “good man” who was helping him that they needed to weigh the steaks. However, the meat department was closed. Gay said at that point, he showed his gun “Just to say I’m not stealing. I need you here to help me to get a couple of these steaks. I’m not going to hurt you.”

The officer asked Gay why he thought the people in the store called police and told them he was threatening them with his gun.

“I don’t know,” Gay said in the interview. “I have no idea.”

The employee said he received a call from the meat department about a man packing his own meat. The employee approached Gay and told him that he could not be there. Gay got upset and said he was going to keep doing what he was doing. The employee said he was not going to help him with the meat.

“Once he held the gun to my throat — pushed it into my throat — I decided to comply,” the employee told police.

At the time of this writing, Gay was being held at the Greene County Jail on a $50,000 bond. He has not yet been scheduled for a court appearance.