Three more women charged in attack on Red Lobster waitress

News-DemocratAugust 28, 2013 

Three more women have been charged in connection with the attack on a waitress at the Fairview Heights Red Lobster restaurant in 2011.

Denise McNeal, 43, of Jennings, Mo., Lareka McNeal, 29, of St. Louis, and Diane Ryland, 50, of St. Louis, were all charged with aggravated battery and mob action in connection with the attack on waitress Heather Frink on Dec. 30, 2011.

All three women were arrested by Fairview Heights police.

Earlier this month a St. Clair County jury found Ania D. Wilkes, 21, guilty, of mob action and felony assault in connection with Frink's attack. She is scheduled to be sentenced Oct. 3.

The four women attacked Frink, 34, as she served them around 6 p.m. The assault was video recorded on a cell phone by another restaurant patron.

Frink was injured in the attack and sustained cuts, bruises, a swollen eye and had to go through physical therapy for injuries she received when the women allegedly repeatedly punched her back.

She could not lift more than 5 pounds after the attack and has been unable to return to her waitressing job.

Frink said she was attacked because she brought Wilkes broiled fish instead of fried fish and Wilkes and the other women were unhappy with the wrong order. The order was fixed and the meal was served complimentary due to the error, Frink added.

When Frink told the women she was going to find a manager to find out if the rest of the women's meals would also be complimentary, she heard one of them call her a derogatory name and when she turned around to tell them they couldn't speak to her like that, Wilkes threw her glass and threw it in Frink's face.

After the drink was thrown, the rest of the women allegedly attacked Frink, pushing her into another table, pulling he hair and punching her repeatedly before other patrons and employees were able to pull her from the mob.

The women paid for their meals with cash and walked out of the restaurant. The video of the attack was publicized in an attempt to find the attackers.