SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Diana Dich, 30, is a Chinese-American restaurant worker who was attacked Sunday after trying to help one of her regular customers resolve an issue with an order. The man had complained that the restaurant didn’t include an eggroll order, Dich said.
Security video shows the man, now identified by Sacramento Police Department as Anthony Brewer, 42, throwing a bag of food through the window counter at Dich. She says she went outside to take a photo of his car, when the man turned on her and threw her into the street, leaving Dich with numerous scrapes, she said.
Brewer was arrested Monday for felony assault, according to the Sacramento Police Department.
Dich’s parents own and operate the Happy Takeout Chinese restaurant on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard in Sacramento. They are Vietnamese born Chinese-American immigrants who fled to the United States by boat as refugees following the Vietnam war. The family opened their restaurant in the Oak Park neighborhood five years ago.
During the past year, there have been numerous reported attacks on both members of the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community and service workers. She says she is unsure why the man escalated the situation to the point it reached.
“Restaurants are easy targets for people to abuse because they assume that… you know should serve and that’s it,” Dich said.
No matter what, violence is not acceptable, said Crystal Huyhn-Kim, organizer of Sacramento’s Asian American and Pacific Islander Coalition.
“Whatever reason that is, it is not OK to attack anybody for any reason -- especially, a business owner in that aspect,” Huynh-Kim said. "I mean don’t bite the hand that feeds you, especially one that is serving the community.”
She is urging people in the community to report these incidents and make sure they don’t fall under the radar.
On Thursday, Brewer contacted ABC10 to respond to the allegations.
“I just apologize for throwing the thing (bag of food). At a certain point, I should have just left,” he said.
He shared his side of the story, saying the dispute was over a missing order of egg rolls that he says he paid for.
“I was just totally wrong. I should not have thrown the bag. I should have asked for my money back, but at that point, I didn’t even want the food anymore,” he said.
Responding to the allegation that he threw Dich into the street, Brewer claims it was self-defense after she started pepper spraying him.
“I just wanted to get some food and watch the game. It just got out of hand. I took part in that, but as far as the assault, I was defending myself, totally 100% self-defense,” he said.