- A Tennessee restaurant is terminating its late-night service after reports of unruly behavior.
- Mid City Grill’s owners also cited an incident involving a gun being drawn, local reports said.
- There has also reportedly been a spike in customers walking out without paying.
A diner based in Johnson City, Tennessee, is discontinuing its late-night service after reports of unruly customers harassing employees and other disorderly conduct.
Johnson City Press reported on Sunday that Mid City Grill’s owners cited incidents of customers leaving without paying and having a “complete disregard,” for staff and the property.
Guns had also reportedly been drawn inside and outside the establishment, which is well-known locally for its hand-crafted burgers and extensive selection of vegan food.
The owners announced the news in a Facebook post, although the diner’s Facebook account has since been deleted, Johnson City Press reported.
“You never really had the escalations or guns or the stuff that it had become,” co-owner Dave Garnett reportedly wrote. He added: “The physical altercations definitely are on the rise.”
According to Johnson City Press, police recently responded to multiple calls claiming that there was a man with a gun at Mid City Grill. He has since been banned from entering the premises.
Pre-pandemic, the restaurant operated a late-night menu from Tuesday through to Saturday until 4 a.m. But with the onset of lockdowns and restrictions, Mid City Grill’s late-night service was reduced to only Fridays and Saturdays.
As stated on its website, the restaurant is now open from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m, with a break in the afternoon.
“For the staff and for the restaurant itself, it just seemed like the best option,” Johnson City Press quoted Garnett as saying on Tuesday.
Unruly restaurant customers have made headlines in recent months. In September, Red Rooster Burgers & Brew, a California burger joint, banned customers under 18 unless accompanied by a parent or guardian, due to what they described as unlawful behavior.
Among other things, the restaurant’s owners accused young customers of throwing fries at employees and sticking candy to the ceilings.
In the same month, a hostess was attacked by diners at Carmine’s, a popular New York restaurant, after asking for proof of COVID-19 vaccines.
Mid City Grill’s troubles mirror those of Burgerville, a popular regional chain. In August, Burgerville’s owners said weapons were found on the premises of its southeast Portland branch. They also said vandalism and damage had occurred, and that it would be temporarily closing the branch as a result.