A video of a Dunkin’ Donuts employee pouring water on a homeless man sleeping at a table inside the store went viral after being posted on Facebook Sunday.
The incident took place in Syracuse, N.Y., and resulted in the employees getting suspended from their jobs.
“How many times do I have to tell you to stop sleeping in here?” the employee says in the video, just after dumping a bucket of water on the young man, who is resting his head on a table while charging his cell phone. The employee then said he would call the cops unless the man, identified as Jeremy Dufresne, left the store.
The owner of the Dunkin’ Donuts franchise, Kimberly Wolak, said both employees involved in the incident have been suspended until a full investigation is conducted in a statement acquired by the Daily News. Wolak also said they will be contacting Dufresne to apologize for the way he was treated. The incident appears to have happened on Sunday night when the video was uploaded. It has since garnered more than 900,000 views.
For his part, Dufresne said he sometimes goes to that Dunkin’ Donuts location to get warm and charge his phone to call his mom and say goodnight to her, which he does every evening, according to Syracuse.com.
“He probably had some personal problems of his own and needed someone to talk to,” Dufresne told Syracuse.com. “And he took it out on someone else, like me.”
A local advocate for homelessness, Al-amin Muhammad, who runs a program called We Rise Above The Streets rallied a group of around 20 demonstrators to show up at the Dunkin’ Donuts to protest Dufresne’s treatment, Syracuse.com reported.
A GoFundMe campaign was started for Dufresne shortly after the video went viral. It has so far raised much more than its original modest goal of $150, reaching more than $3,000 in 11 hours.