Teenage Cheddar’s host beaten unconscious by angry customers who weren’t seated together

A teenage restaurant host was beaten by angry customers Sunday night in Memphis after their group of eight was split into two tables. (Source: WMC)
Published: Jul. 26, 2023 at 3:41 PM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC/Gray News) – A teenage restaurant host was beaten by angry customers Sunday night in Memphis after their group of eight was split into two tables, he said.

Memphis police said officers responded to an assault at the Cheddar’s restaurant around 8 p.m.

The restaurant manager told police that two suspects were upset over seating arrangements.

The 17-year-old victim, Omarion Ford, has only been working for about a month as a host at Cheddar’s. Following Sunday’s assault, he said he has since quit his job in fear for his life.

“You never know if they’ll probably come back,” he said. “They’ll probably kill me if I come back. Anything.”

Ford said a family of eight came to the restaurant. After hearing that they would have to wait an hour for a table, one of the family members suggested they split up into smaller groups.

They were seated, but Ford said they were unhappy with the tables and left. However, another large group’s cancellation allowed for the party of eight to be seated together, so Ford offered them a large table that was now available.

But one of the women in the group confronted Ford, asking why they weren’t seated together originally if the table was open. That’s when things took a turn, he said.

Ford said a man with the group punched him in the face. He said he hit back in self-defense, and that’s when the group began attacking him.

Video shows the chaotic aftermath inside the restaurant.

Ford’s mother, Latisha Ford, said she rushed to the restaurant after being told what happened. She said her son was unconscious when she got there.

Latisha Ford said her son was treated at the scene by paramedics and then taken to the hospital.

“It’s very hurtful because not only did they do this to him, they are adults and it was a group of people. They could’ve killed my son,” Latisha Ford said.

Now that Omarion Ford is out of the hospital, he and his family want his attackers to be held responsible.

So far, no arrests have been made. Memphis police said they’re looking for a white GMC Denali.

“I do feel like they need to catch (them) and whatever consequences behind that, then they’re going to have to deal with it,” Omarion Ford said. “Because you should not have put your hands on me.”

The restaurant owner released the following statement about the assault:

“We are shocked and saddened by this senseless act of violence against our team member. Violence has no place in our restaurant and we are cooperating fully with the police investigation. Any further questions should be directed to the Memphis Police Department.”