ORANGE VILLAGE, Ohio– The woman accused of starting the fight at the Red Lobster in Orange Village pleaded not guilty and is free after posting bond.
Officers rushed to the restaurant Saturday night when a fight broke out between a group of customers and several employees.
Investigators said the brawl started when the customer complained about the service and argued with a waitress.
The manager told police that he asked Darlene Brown, 52, of Cleveland, to leave the restaurant, but she refused.
Another employee attempted to intervene and told police Brown smacked her in the shoulder. She allegedly retaliated by smacking Brown in the face.
Detectives say Brown’s family and friends then joined in the fight.
An off duty police officer, who was providing security at Red Lobster, attempted to break up the melee, and is heard on a 911 call asking for additional officers to be sent to the restaurant.
Orange Village police said they charged Brown with disorderly conduct and assault, based on witness statements.
Brown made her initial court appearance on the charges earlier this week and was ordered by the judge to stay away from the Red Lobster on Orange Place and to have no contact with employees.
If convicted, she could face up to 180 days in jail.
A spokesperson for Red Lobster issued the following statement to FOX 8:
“I can’t comment on the specifics of this incident, but what I can say is that the safety and security of our guests and our team members is a top priority. We take situations like this very seriously and are grateful for the support of the local police department in handling this incident. Red Lobster is fully cooperating with the police in their investigation.”