Woman Says Restaurant Held Her Hostage Over a Tip
A young mom says she was held against her will at a popular restaurant because she wouldn't pay the tip.
Jasmine Marks was having dinner at La Fisherman restaurant in Houston with a party of six. The menu says that a tip of 17 percent for parties of five or more is automatically added to the bill. But Marks wasn't happy with her meal.
Marks told INSIDE EDITION, "We were held hostage. The service was ridiculously slow. We didn't get everything we ordered."
When the bill came, the tab was $95.40. Sure enough, 17 percent, $16.22, had been added as a tip.
"I don't mind tipping but not if the service is bad," said Marks.
Marks says she was happy to pay for the food and drink, but not the tip. When the manager refused to remove the tip from the bill, things reached stalemate. That's when Marks says the restaurant staff called police and locked the doors.
Marks said, "They wouldn't let us go and there was nothing we could do."
But that's not how the restaurant sees it. Manager Katherine Nguyen says the party got good service.
Ngyuen told INSIDE EDITION, "They seemed fine because every time I checked on them, they were like, 'I'm okay.' I asked them if they needed anything, they said 'no.' "
The manager says the main doors got locked because the dispute about the tip took place as the restaurant was closing. She insists Mark's group could have left by a side door.
"It's not like they were locked. They knew they could go outside, they just didn't choose to. They agreed to stay there and wait for the cops," said Ngyuen.
Sure enough, police arrived, and so did Marks' mother, who had received a phone call from her daughter.
Marks' mother told INSIDE EDITION, "You don't lock my family up...for nothing. Especially over a tip."
Marks' mother ended up paying the tip.
Now, Jasmine Marks says she'll never forget the meal that left a bad taste in her mouth.