‘I’m Still Suffering from Loss of Vision’: Woman Claims She Suffered Chemical Burns to Eye After Now-Fired Restaurant Manager Threw Drink In Her Face

A Crab Du Jour customer who had a drink thrown in her face by the manager of a local franchise, has hired an attorney to help her seek justice. A month after the incident, the employee has been fired and cited with a disorderly conduct charge, but the woman believes he should suffer a far greater penalty.

On Aug. 16, while complaining about her meal at the popular restaurant at 4638 S. 76th St. in Greenfield, Wisconsin, Mariah Luckette was assaulted by Jason Diong, the former location manager. As a result of his actions, the woman says she has suffered eye damage and mental health challenges.

According to Luckette, she had never had a problem with food from the restaurant before but this time the food was “nasty.”

She said, “My food was nasty, the corn was hard, the potatoes was hard. I told Jason, look this is my friend’s first time here, I done bragged about this place and y’all bring out these plates.”

However, when she asked for a new meal, Diong had an attitude. Nervous about him possibly spitting in her food, she asked for someone else to prepare … and if that could not be accommodated, she said she wasn’t going to pay.

After that, Diong escalated the situation, requiring members of the Greenfield Police Department to be notified about the incident.

Diong says that’s not what happened. Though he did not report this to the police, during an interview with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, he said he tossed the drink in her face because she called him a racial slur, demeaning his Asian identity.

The man told the responding officer he assaulted the woman because she said she was going to leave and not pay for the food.  

On the police bodycam, the manager could be heard saying, “I throw a glass of water at her. She just reacted and throw something back to me. I shouldn’t have, but I’m really frustrated.”

He also alleged the woman was “intoxicated.”

Surveillance footage was given to the GPD and showed the chronology of the altercation.

Screen Shot from Crab Du Jour Altercation Video

Luckette is seen in the video gesturing toward Diong with one hand and her cellphone in the other. In the police report, it is revealed that Luckette was on the phone with her boyfriend at the beginning of the incident.

The next frame of the video shows Diong picking up the woman’s glass, which she says contained an alcoholic beverage garnished and cut with lemon, and splashing her face with it. The victim claims the drink went into her eyes. Officers confirmed Luckette’s eyes were red and tearing up as if irritated by something.

“It escalated so quickly,” said Luckette. “I just was asking him why I was being treated this way.”

In response to his assault, the woman picked up a bar stool and hurled it across the bar, almost hitting the former manager.

Officers contend Diong lied to them about where he was when they called him for questioning and to see if they could obtain footage regarding the altercation. He said he was not at the restaurant but had already left for home.

However, he was. Shortly after denying he was in the business; officers saw him leaving the restaurant.

Screen Shot from Crab Du Jour Altercation Video (2)

Eventually, he was cited by the police for disorderly conduct. Diong said he was going to pay it, and said he was sorry for losing his cool, but believes Luckette is wrongfully shifting the blame on him.

“She’s blaming me for everything, I’m not even being defensive. She can say whatever she wants,” he said, insisting she called him a derogatory name.

On Tuesday, Sept. 27, five weeks after the incident, the franchise owner of the Crab Du Jour that Diong worked for released a statement saying, “We are both shocked and enraged by this incident. We have zero tolerance for this type of behavior and take this incident very seriously because the trust and safety of our customers is our highest priority.”

“The employee in question has been terminated and an internal investigation and corporate policy review is currently underway to ensure this does not happen again,” the statement continued. “We will continue to cooperate with local law enforcement during this ongoing investigation.”

Some reports state he was fired as early as Wednesday, Sept. 21.

Luckette believes that Diong should have suffered a far graver reprimand for his actions and the damages he caused her.

According to Luckette, she has been “traumatized” by the event and is now seeing a therapist. She said she also had to be treated by doctors for the chemical burns to her eyes suffered.

She told FOX 6, “It’s hard for me, honestly. It’s been very hard. I’m still feeling super emotional, super traumatized.”

“My iris is swollen, so even though it’s not a physical appearance, it’s the inside, which causes my vision to be blurry,” Luckette also revealed.

A week after the incident, Luckette linked with members of the Original Black Panthers and went up to the restaurant to confront Diong. A video of that confrontation was posted on Facebook.

Darryl Farmer, the leader of the state’s chapter of the Black Panthers asked him, “Do you remember throwing a drink in her face.”

Diong calmly says, “I did.”

“Why did you do that?” Farmer asks.

He answers, “Well, she was making these racial remarks. And I apologized.”

“You apologized to who?” Farmer said and, in a beat, asked, “If she was making racial remarks, why are you the only one that got a ticket?”

Diong says he didn’t know why.

“Here’s the thing. You disrespected a queen from our community by throwing a drink in her face,” Farmer stated before calling his actions, “intolerable” and “unacceptable.”

As the activist detailed the damage caused by Diong’s actions, Luckette starts to cry.

Farmer shares that he now wants the restaurant shut down permanently and for police to arrest Diong and charge him with assault and battery.

Farmer also asserted that Diong would not have behaved the same way if a male customer, specifically a Black male, would have complained.

Now, Luckette is asking for the higher-ups to get involved and consider pressing harsher charges than the citation he received. She is also looking to file a civil lawsuit and believes it is “great” that he has been fired.

“I hope anyone who feels it’s OK to assault women, would not work at any serving businesses,” Luckette said. “He needs to be charged with assault and battery. A month later I’m still suffering externally from loss of vision and internally I am in therapy and I hope I can get over this depression. It’s changed my life.” 

The Milwaukee County District Attorney’s Office is currently reviewing the current misdemeanor charge. 

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