LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – One Little Rock restaurant is searching for a trio of men after the group ate a full meal – then walked out on the bill.
China Plus Buffet on Colonel Glenn and University has been in business for 11 years. The buffet considers itself a family restaurant and caters to the busy lunch crowd in Midtown.
“It’s a family-owned business just trying to make a living,” explained Michael Parker, co-owner of China Plus.
Sunday evening, the restaurant was wrapping up for the night when three men walked in and asked to sit down. Siyu Wang was manning the register and says the men were polite and friendly – until it came time to leave.
Security footage captures the trio walking right past Wang and out the door as she calls after them to pay.
“Sir, you guys didn’t pay yet,” Wang recalls saying to one of the stragglers. “And he said, ‘oh my friend paid for me already’.”
The trio left without the check, and so did another man Wang was dealing with when the group escaped, a man who also was trying to head out with a meal free of charge.
In total, Wang estimates the cost of all four meals was around $80. She says this type of crime has picked up in recent months, to the point where she once thought about shutting down.
“Recently it always happens, almost every day,” she said.
Parker said this type of crime is a growing trend in the area, with customers “eating three or four plates and saying, ‘oh, it was no good. I don’t want to pay for it’.”
In addition, he says other types of crime have seen an increase, as well – like violence or threats against staff and people attempting to steal from the restaurant.
While working towards a solution, the buffet has added more cameras and is turning over all “dashers” to the police.
If you recognize any of the men, call Little Rock Police.