The brawl, which unfolded on December 30, 2018, erupted after a disagreement between several customers over the use of the restaurant's play area, which is designed for children aged three to nine.
According to police, an unidentified customer who'd been inside the play area with her two children, aged two and five, became upset with a group of teenagers occupying the playground and instructed them to leave. Things quickly escalated, with the teens becoming aggressive with the woman.
"[They kept] telling me to get up and fight them, and I said I'm not gonna fight you," the 28-year-old mother, who did not want to be identified, told local news station KCBS. The incident later spilled out onto the dining area after the teens threw cups of water and ice at the shocked mother, with other customers beginning to confront the unruly group.
Footage shared on social media of the fracas shows the teens yelling at various customers, telling one in particular to cease standing between them and their intended target, presumably the mother.
While the individual continues standing between the warring parties, things eventually get even more heated after one of the teens starts throwing objects at a McDonald's employee. Everything from what appear to be small condiment packets, hamburger buns and soda cups was thrown between those involved.
"I was about to get hit in the head," Dexter Forbes Jr., a former employee, told KCBS. "They were throwing them pretty high too; like, they had no aim."
Speaking on the customer who stood between the mother and teens, Forbes stressed that the patron "was doing way more work than my manager was… [The patron] was making sure they were okay; he walked to the back with them."
Forbes, who was one of many filming the altercation, was reportedly suspended and later fired after he posted several videos of the melee on his Twitter page.
Officers with the Moreno Valley Police Department didn't arrive onto the scene until roughly 7:30 p.m. local time after receiving reports of a physical altercation at the restaurant. By the time police arrived, the teens had already left.
The teens reportedly caused damages amounting to an estimated $2,000, police say. Authorities are presently calling on anyone with information to contact the department.