PASADENA (CBSLA.com) — A popular restaurant in Pasadena is receiving backlash after a woman says she’ll never eat there again over how she says it treated a homeless person.
The incident at Conrads Restaurant occurred Saturday morning after Florencia Albert says she offered to buy breakfast for Michael, a transient.
As CBS2’s Jasmine Viel reports, Albert says Michael was seated outside and asked for French toast, so she invited him in as her guest.
But that’s when, Albert says, the restaurant told him he couldn’t stay and had to order food to go.
“The owner said, ‘We don’t want him here,’ ” Albert said.
“This did not happen,” countered Conrads’ attorney, Frank Gooch, who said the owners are appalled by what’s being said online and want to set the record straight.
Gooch says the owner had no problem with Michael staying to eat but had a problem with him panhandling, and that’s why police were called.
“The police officer said, ‘You have the absolute right to refuse service to anyone.’ She said, ‘No. This gentleman is sitting here and eating now,’ ” Gooch explained.
But Albert, who is also an attorney, says she threatened to sue, and that’s when she says the restaurant allowed Michael to stay.
On Facebook, a post by Albert about the incident has received thousands of shares and comments.
“When someone with 40 years of experience in doing good can be decimated on social media,” said Gooch, who also said Albert needs to make a retraction.
But Albert says she’s standing her ground.
“Perhaps a really unfortunate situation will turn into something good,” said Albert, who has messaged the chief of police in Pasadena to thank and commend officers who responded to the situation.