Veteran Plans to File Assault Charges Against Chili's Manager Who Snatched His Free Meal

The Veterans Day tribute gone terribly wrong set off a social media firestorm.

Photo Credit: CBSDFW / YouTube

Ernest Walker, a retired veteran, is not backing down after being denied his free meal and humiliated by a manager at a Chili's in Cedar Hill, Texas. The Veterans Day tribute gone terribly wrong set off a social media firestorm after Walker posted video recording of the incident.

As of Sunday, Nov. 14, Chili's had yet to respond to Walker. However, Chili’s parent company, Brinker International, issued a statement that read: “We are taking this very seriously and the leaders in our company are actively involved with the goal of making it right.” But they postponed their meeting with Walker, who was interviewed with his attorney outside the establishment this weekend.

"Unfortunately, we fell short on a day that we strive to honor our veterans and active military for their service," Chili’s said, in response to the backlash.

“That’s fine. They got to do what they do. I’m not a company. I’m just me,” Walker said. 

“This is what I’m able to wear," he added, in response to the manager's and customer's doubts of him being a veteran. He even showed the employee his identification and military discharge document before being rebuffed. 

"Excuse me...I purposely don’t wear rank or a name tag as not to be identified as an active soldier,” Walker scoffed.

“I certainly hope that Brinker International takes a stand and makes it clear that they don’t condone that type of behavior in their establishment,” Walker’s attorney, Kim Cole, said.

Walker still hopes to meet with Brinker and told CBS Local he also plans to file assault charges against the same Chili's manager.


Alexandra Rosenmann is an AlterNet associate editor. Follow her @alexpreditor.

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