When Yossi Gallo saw a homeless man standing across the street from a McDonald’s in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, he asked him if he was hungry and then brought him inside the restaurant. The 39-year-old bought him a meal and then seated himself not too far from the guy, later identified as James Davis, as the two ate.
Little did the Good Samaritan know, this random act of kindness would lead both him and the man he had helped to be kicked out of the eatery.
A Facebook video, which showed a police officer telling the homeless man he needed to leave and was not allowed to return as Gallo tried to explain the situation in the background, has gone viral.
Apparently, when Gallo entered the building with Davis, an employee working at the register said the homeless person won’t be able to buy any food.
“I waved him down and said, ‘Hey, are you hungry?’ And he said, ‘Yes.’ So, I went in there with him and as soon as we went inside, the lady at the register says ‘You’re not getting food,” Gallo could be heard saying in the video.
After the man paid for the meal, an employee proceeded to call the police, reportedly claiming the homeless man was trespassing and begging for food.
“He didn’t ask me for food,” he told the officer. “I saw him across the street and I brought him over here.”
When Gallo got a little loud, the restaurant staff accused him of being disorderly, and despite his protests, both he and Davis were asked to leave.
“He was very quiet, very polite, didn't cause any kind of problem,” said Gallo said of the homeless person, as quoted by the Myrtle Beach Online. “He didn't smell. He doesn't act up. He wasn't doing anything that you would not want in a restaurant.”
However, following the incident, Gallo told The Sun News he had nothing against the police officer.
“I see all these thousands of comments that are very disgusting toward her and I don't think it's her problem. I don't think she did anything wrong. She had a task, that's what's she's there for, and I have nothing against her,” he said. “By all means if I ever got in trouble. I would want to be confronted by a police officer, that's the police officer I'd want to be confronted by. She was very nice, she was very polite. I have a feeling that if it was a different police officer, I would have already been arrested.”
Myrtle Beach Police Captain Joey Crosby also issued a statement.
“Officers were dispatched to the location after receiving a call from an employee of the business, that a male was in the parking lot asking people for money,” it read. “Upon arriving at the restaurant, an employee approached the officer and indicated the male was inside the establishment the employee requested the officer issue a trespassing warning and asked that the person leave the premises. The officer advised the male of the request made by the business and issued the warning.”
Thumbnail/Banner: Reuters, Toru Hanai