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Couple Wants To Make Statement By Not Paying Restaurant Bill

WESTMINSTER, Colo. (CBS4) – They wanted a nice dinner out. Instead, they say they got sick from their meal and now the couple faces charges for not paying the bill.

The Luebkes contacted 4 On Your Side Consumer Investigator Jodi Brooks for advice. She told them to pay the bill and be done with it, but they said that’s the problem today — everyone pays. So the Luebkes want to make a statement.

Diane and William Luebke told Brooks at some point in your life you have to hold your ground, and at 74 and 73 years old, the couple is standing firm.

“It was an experience,” William said.

The couple dined at the Outback Steakhouse in Westminster last week.

“It was like the waiter that was there, but that wasn’t there,” William said.

He says their food requests were ignored and the service was sub-par. After Diane ate her entree she had to excuse herself and go to the restroom.

“Up everything came and I was so sick,” Diane said.

When the bill for $56.21 arrived at the table the Luebkes asked for the manager.

“He knelt down on the floor like he was in church or something,” William said.

The Luebkes were offended by the manager’s demeanor and disrespect, but there appeared to be a compromise.

“He said, ‘I’ll take care of everything.’ And I said, ‘Well, I really appreciate it,’ ” William said.

So the Luebkes left the restaurant. They had parked in a handicapped spot, and before they pulled away a server took down their license plate. According to the Westminster police report, the Luebkes face theft charges for not paying. The report indicates the manager states he responded to the couple’s complaints by “offering a discount on the bill.”

“(He) never used the word ‘discount.’ Why if I thought I owed $27 or something, why would I get up and leave?” William said.

Brooks went to the Outback Steakhouse in Westminster to talk with the manager. He told her he did say discount and offered half off, making the bill $28.10.

William said he’s still not going to pay.

The manager said every time someone leaves without paying he calls police.

The theft charge is a misdemeanor. A summons to court for the Luebkes will be issued next week.

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