A group of pizza-parlor patrons in Newark, Calif., were involved in a massive brawl this weekend over a missing cell phone that wasn’t exactly missing.
On Saturday, a simple misunderstanding escalated into a violent rumble at John’s Incredible Pizza Company inside the NewPark Mall in the San Francisco Bay Area, with one witness estimating that at least 20 people were involved in the melee, the San Francisco Gate reports.
The trouble began after a family asked another group of patrons about their daughter’s missing phone, which ─ unbeknownst to them ─ had already been returned to the restaurant’s lost and found.
"Next thing you know, there's just a massive brawl and people throwing fists, and it was quite crazy," Drake Lynn, an employee at John’s, told KNTV.
Lynn added that he initially saw just two women arguing over the phone, but their male companions and friends came to each of their defenses and started “throwing punches at the other parties that were there.”
Restaurant employees attempted to intervene before Newark police arrived on the scene. The Newark PD, however, was apparently not aware of the scale of the fight, and soon called in reinforcements from the nearby Fremont Police Department, KNTV reports.
"It was a horrible experience," said Nicole Davis, a witness who spoke with the SF Gate. "I made sure I protected my kids until they cleared the way so we can get out, but I just hated the fact they did this at a family establishment. It makes me sick that my kids had to see that and all the kids that were scared crying."
Following the ordeal, the manager of John’s dug up the cell phone that sparked the altercation, revealing that it had been turned in to the lost and found hours beforehand.
"We would have definitely found the cellphone, if they would have just given us a little bit of time and let us do our jobs instead of throwing punches," Lynn told KNTV.