North Carolina woman brings bag of crickets to restaurant for free meal scam

Shatanya Beasley, 26, was arrested Friday and released hours later after attempting to swindle staff at a North Carolina Applebee’s that evening. Beasley brought a bag of dead crickets to the area restaurant and placed one on her plate, refusing to pay for her $70.25 meal.

Gastonia Police Department

A North Carolina woman faces charges after planting an insect from a bag of others on her plate in order to get a free meal from an area restaurant.

According to Gastonia, NC police, Shatanya Beasley, 26, was arrested Friday and released hours later after attempting to swindle staff at an Applebee’s that evening.

Beasley, with her son in tow, made a complaint with staff members about her meal, stating that there was a cricket in her food and that she had no intention of paying her bill totaling $70.25, police reported.

According to Gastonia Police Department (GPD) Public Information Officer Donna Lahser, Beasley and her son then left the restaurant. Soon after, Beasley’s waitress saw that she had left her wallet open on the table with a noticeable bag of dead crickets inside of it before turning the wallet over to the manager.

Upon Beasley’s return, the manager told her that she would need to pay for her food, but she and her son reportedly left the restaurant without paying for the pricey meal, as area CBS affiliate WBTV reported.

As she left the restaurant for the second time, Beasley’s license plate number was written down by an Applebee’s employee and police issued a warrant for her arrest before tracking her down soon after.

According to police, Beasley was arrested after turning herself in at the GPD front desk.

While initially charged with obtaining property by false pretense, Beasley was later released on a $2,500 bond.

The manager of the area Applebee’s later said he no longer wanted to press charges against Beasley because she returned and paid the bill, Lahser said. Police advised the manager that once the warrant is served, he would have the option of pursing the charge or not.

The obtaining property by false pretense violation is a Class H felony, which is punishable by four to 25 months in prison.

Since the warrants were already served, the manager of the Applebee's location will have to go to court or call the District Attorney's office to get the charges dropped.

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