Restaurant takes heat for refusing to serve homeless man

Vanessa Varona said that Taqueria Mexico in Denver prevented her from buying a homeless man dinner.

Vanessa Varona said that Taqueria Mexico in Denver prevented her from buying a homeless man dinner.  (iStock)

A Denver woman has taken to Facebook to express her anger after a local restaurant refused to serve a homeless customer.

Vanessa Varona was eating dinner at Taqueria Mexico on Jan. 7 when she saw a homeless man come inside, Fox News' KDRV reported.  She offered to buy him a hot meal and another customer asked him to sit down at his booth so the two could eat together, but the restaurant wouldn’t allow it.

 “Here comes a waitress and basically stood him up and said no you can’t sit down here,” Varona said. “How do you treat people like that?”

Varona wrote on her Facebook that the restaurant didn’t treat him with respect in a post has been shared more than 7,000 times by Tuesday morning.

“One of the waitress named Rena came and told him he couldn't sit with him and he had to take his food and leave! I said no! He is human just like us and you will not treat him any different. The waitress kept telling him to go so as he started walking out I told him to sit with me so I sat on the outside of the booth. I told the waitress as long as I'm here you will not treat him like he's garbage!”

#PleaseShare I wanna thank everyone who has shared my post bringing awareness to how cruel these people are. We will not stand for this! The owner will know that his actions have consequences :)

Posted by Vanessa M Varona on Monday, January 11, 2016

Taqueria Mexico employee Adiel Estrada refuted Varona’s claims, saying that the man was drunk and was approaching customers and asking for leftovers.

“It wasn’t so much we kicked him out because he was homeless. He was drunk. He had been drinking so we asked him politely to leave,” said Estrada.

Estrada provided security footage to KDRV, which showed the homeless man hovering over a table of leftovers and approaching a customer sitting at a booth.  But when the man sat down with Varona, the situation turned.

 “When (Varona) had him sit down, at that point there really wasn’t much of a problem,” said Estrada. “We kind of should have just left it alone at a certain point.”

Varona agreed—but felt the waitress went too far.

“They shouldn’t feel like garbage,” she added. “If he goes in to eat and people want him to sit, let him feel normal.”