Footage of the incident, which was recorded by fellow customer Joe Boback, shows several uniformed Taco Bell workers dishing out punches to Bryan Reese outside of the restaurant as he's being held down by another employee.
— Beasley (@throwdembows) March 5, 2019
"Stop! Stop! Stop!" Boback is heard yelling out as one restaurant employee is seen attempting to end the brawl. "Stop! Stop! Stop!"
Although Reese is eventually let go, the attention is later focused on his girlfriend, who's seen covering her head as another worker attempts to slap her. The 30-second video ultimately cuts off as Boback is again yelling "Stop."
The beatdown, which took place on February 24, was the result of several factors, such as employees' inability to keep up with an overwhelming amount of orders the establishment received via Grubhub and those placed by walk-in customers. Customers inside the restaurant were reportedly seeing wait times of around 40 minutes.
"[Employees] knew everybody was upset; they seemed to be upset too," Reese told local news station CBS Philly. "They said that Grubhub was the reason that nobody was getting their orders."
"They were inundated with Grubhub orders, and that took precedence," he added. Reese told the station that he only arrived at the diner with his girlfriend to pick up his friend, Boback, who'd been waiting nearly an hour for his cheesy gordita order.
"I just stopped by the Taco Bell to pick some friends up who were getting food at the end of the night," Reese said. "When the complaints kept coming in, somebody just snapped, and they came after me."
He later told NBC 10 that the entire incident had been "unprovoked" on his part, noting that "there's no reason my girlfriend should've been on the ground getting beat up as well."
Reese eventually made the decision to release the video recording after Taco Bell failed to address the issue or give him the names of the employees so that charges could be filed. In publishing the video, Reese wrote on Twitter that the company had instead offered him a $20 gift card.
"When I reached out to @tacobell for justice they offered a $20 gift card," Reese wrote. "They must have thought I said Birthday not Assault. I bet this would never happen at a @ChickfilA."
The video release worked: Reese eventually got the names he wanted, and the workers were booted from the company. It's unclear if the individuals have been charged yet.
In a statement to Sputnik on the matter, a Taco Bell spokesperson said that officials were "shocked and disappointed to see this situation."
"We and our franchisees do not tolerate this behavior," the release reads. "The franchisee who owns and operates this location is retraining its staff, and all team members involved have been terminated."
Incidentally, this is not the first time that this particular Taco Bell has wound up on the news. CBS Philly has also reported that a Grubhub delivery man was yelled at and chased out of the same store on Sunday when he arrived to pick up an order.
"The manager told me there was nothing they could do, that Grubhub was overpowering their regular customers, and they couldn't handle it," Kyle Scott, who noted that employees were yelling slurs at him, told the outlet. "Call Grubhub and have them cancel it. The cashier then proceeded to tell me she's not making my order."
Local police have launched investigations into both altercations.
It's presently unclear what the retraining process will entail. Taco Bell did not offer details to Sputnik on what policies may be enacted in order to better handle orders.