Police in Florida arrested a man for assaulting two McDonald's employees on New Year's Eve, with a witness capturing the incident in a viral video.
Daniel Taylor, who turned 40 the day before his arrest, was charged with two counts of battery in St. Petersburg after becoming violent over a policy that required straws to be requested at the counter, a witness told BuzzFeed News.
Video of the incident, recorded by Brenda Biandudi, shows Taylor yelling at a young woman McDonald's employee. Biandudi said Taylor had gotten furious after picking up his order and not finding any straws in the condiments section.
"It was all over a straw," she said. "He yelled at the employees, 'Theres no drinking straws here, it looks like someone is not doing their job.'"
The employee then explained to Taylor that it was now policy to not put straws out, but that customers can instead request them.
"He was very upset, he started berating her, swearing, saying 'There’s no law like that,'" Biandudi said. "She said, ‘Yes it is, we’re not allowed to put straws out.'"
"The voices were escalating, they started swearing at each other," Biandudi added.
Since she was the only customer, she began filming on her phone in case a witness was needed. Taylor then leaned over the counter, grabbed the employee's shirt, and jerked her toward him.
In the video, witnesses can be heard saying "get the police" and "let her go."
The employee of the Marine Harbor McDonald's fought back against Taylor.
"YES this really did happen last night for all those asking me... it all started because he wanted a straw!!!," posted Brenda's daughter, Kinie Biandudi, on Facebook. "The young girl said she used to box 🥊"
Taylor, who was under the influence of alcohol, then declared, "I want her ass fired," according to the arrest report.
"No, you're going to go to jail," the employee replied.
Biandudi said she came forward with the video partly because "I want the girl to keep her job, and all the employees to keep their jobs... I just feel sorry for the girl, she told me she just had a baby two months ago."
The arrest report stated that the employee was not harmed; however, Taylor, who is homeless, allegedly injured another employee by kicking her in the stomach.
“The defendant was being escorted out of the business by management due to him battering another employee, and causing a disturbance," the arrest report stated. "The defendant kicked the victim in the stomach while she was standing near the exit door."
Biandudi said she heard one injured employee "saying she felt pain in her stomach area, she had had a C-section, and had a pain."
The two employees did not immediately respond to BuzzFeed News, nor did McDonald's.