A family night out turned into a fiasco at an Applebee’s in Katy, Texas. Eli Gau, his wife, Lillian, two sons, Ryan, 3, and Ethan, 1, attempted to have a Sunday night dinner but unfortunately the night took a wrong turn. Their 3 year old got a little out of control and began wandering away from their table.

“I went and grabbed him,” Gau said. ”As I was grabbing him and coming back, the manager was walking to me.”

The manager told him that his family was making too much noise. The manager then called the Harris County Sheriff’s Office to complain. Gau in turn called the police to say that he felt threatened. The deputy warned them not to come back or they would be charged with trespassing. The children’s mom was stunned.

“I feel disrespected,” said Lillian Maliti. “This has never happened in my life.”

Applebee’s released a statement in response to the incident:

Our franchise owner-operator has apologized to the Guest and invited the party back into their restaurant to demonstrate the standard of service each of our Guests deserve to receive during every visit. As a brand, our focus is and must always be providing the best possible experience for all of our Guests at all times. When a disruption in our restaurants affects any of our Guests, it is the manager’s responsibility to step in to resolve the situation. It is exceedingly rare that a situation requires the assistance of law enforcement, and our franchisee is using this instance as a teaching moment to better manage future disruptions in their restaurants.

Unfortunately the family has stated they’re never returning to Applebee’s again.

“I feel heartbroken” about what happened, Gau told KHOU 11 news.


Clutchettes, do you think the restaurant acted inappropriately? 

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  • MimiLuvs

    “…BUT I believe the (new) thought is not to pay attention to tantrums because that’s just feeding into the misbehavior. I highly doubt it has anything to do with the parents enjoying their experiences….”

    If that is the case, then one of the parents (or the child’s guardian) should take the child and remove themselves from the environment until the child calms down.
    Keep in mind, they are still in a shared public space with other people. I know that children can become irritated and cranky, but when a child is screaming and crying for more than ten minutes, then a parent should find another solution to calm their child.
    I have experience far too many incidents where a parent (or guardian) would still have their conversations with the other adults while their child is screaming/crying for forty-five minutes.