Gay Waitress Loses Job Over Alleged Fake Receipt

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BRIDGEWATER, N.J. (CNN)  – A New Jersey waitress was out of a job on Saturday, weeks after her story of being denied a tip because of her sexual orientation brought an outpouring of sympathy and donations.

Dayna Morales’ employment was terminated after an internal investigation into allegations that she made up the story, Gallop Asian Bistro manager Bobby Vanderhoof told CNN.

“The results of that investigation are inconclusive as to exactly what happened between Ms. Morales and the customers that night. However, in light of the investigation and recent events, both Ms. Morales and Gallop Asian Bistro have made a joint decision that Ms. Morales will no longer continue her employment at our restaurant,” the restaurant posted on Facebook.

Dayna Morales, 22, a former Marine, first complained about the alleged incident on a “Have a Gay Day” Facebook page, posting a photo of a receipt that read, “I’m sorry but I cannot tip because I do not agree with your lifestyle and how you live your life.”

The post went viral. Morales claimed the message was on a receipt for $93.55, for a meal ordered by a family of four at the restaurant in Bridgewater, New Jersey.

But then a report on television station NBC4 displayed a receipt from a family showing an $18 tip on a bill of $93.55, and a credit card statement with the same total value, $111.55, to back it up.

Facebook is on fire with hateful comments from people angered by the report.

Brian Cook wrote on the original Facebook post, “When you lie to make someone LOOK homophobic, you weaken your cause.”

Mia Frederiksen wrote, “Whatever the motive, it’s going to harm people who truly are discriminated against. The more this happens, the more the truly maligned will be ignored.”

Attempts by CNN to reach Morales for comment went unanswered.

After Morales’ story drew media attention, she and the restaurant received tips from “all over the world,” Morales told CNN in November. She and the restaurant said they planned to donate the money to the Wounded Warrior Project because Morales served in the Marine Corps for two years.

That portion of Morales life has also come into question after this incident, as NBC4 has also reported that Morales was dishonorably discharged from the Marines. The Pentagon has since confirmed those reports, saying Morales was dismissed after she stopped showing up for required drills.

On the Facebook page, commenter Jeff Barrett wrote, “Wounded Warriors does not deserve to be associated with somebody who would cheapen the plight of both veterans and the LGBT community and slander an innocent family for money.”

The restaurant’s general manager, Byron Lapola, said the money that came in still will be donated.

We want your comments about this story on our Facebook page. We’ll share some of those comments on the news at 9 on WHNT 2.


  • Patti Barnes

    the merchant copy is the one you give to the restaurant so they can charge your credit card. there is no tip written on that copy. the customer copy is the one you take with you and they could have written anything on that once this story made headlines. I very rarely write the info on my copy when I get it. If they want to really prove they left a tip, show us the charge on your credit card statement.

  • Tiffany

    But then a report on television station NBC4 displayed a receipt from a family showing an $18 tip on a bill of $93.55, and a credit card statement with the same total value, $111.55, to back it up.

  • Nina

    Apparently, they did show the charge on their credit card statement. “But then a report on television station NBC4 displayed a receipt from a family showing an $18 tip on a bill of $93.55, and a credit card statement with the same total value, $111.55, to back it up.” On the flip side of your argument, she could have just as easily printed a new receipt.

  • April Beadle

    You can write anything yiu want on your copy. Why in the world would any waitress change a receipt, leave out the tip, insult herself, and risk chatges of forgery, by resigning the guest name? To get herself fired? No, having worked as a waitress for years, I doubt she did this. And she didnt deserve to be fired. Customers are cruel!

    • Davie Norwood

      yes customers can be cruel and some people cannot understand the facts that the family showed where they did in fact pay a tip (they showed their credit card statement) and the waitress used this to get “sympathy money from around the world” and yet you think she does not deserve to get fired. So do all service staff support each other even when they are proven con artists? I’m hoping you just did not know the full story.

  • Wanda

    If the customer was really homophobic he would have requested another table which would gave him another waitress…. Or simply walked out of th restaurant

  • Robert Fox

    As a person who has worked food service for over 30 years you leave your personnel feelings at the house. Even if the comment was made, even if there was not a tip, you are a person that serves the public good or bad. Bottom line the customer pays your salary deal with it or find other work

  • Ruth Stafford

    Don’t understand why some people do things just to hurt another person.
    I think the manager did right by firing this employee. Maybe it will teach this
    Young lady a lesson, and hopefully she won’t do it again.

  • Day

    Remember, if this escalates further & the couple (or waitress) wish to be vindicated, the restaurant has record of the charges and could easily prove or disprove them if need be. They know whether the patrons card was charged $115 or $93, and it it were the latter, I doubt they would have made the public statements & dismissed the waitress.

    I wonder if the waitress will make a statement after this. An sincere apology to the LGBT community would be a good start.

  • nicole

    The hand writing doesn’t match between the reciepts. Its not even written with the same pen. Looks to me like another reciept was printed and forged.

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