Days Inn employee fired for harassing guest who took yogurt from breakfast bar: 'Come on, prison boy'

A Days Inn employee in Norfolk, Va. was fired for yelling at a guest who took yogurt from a common area. (Screenshot: Instagram/Joshua_October)

Days Inn desk clerk was fired for yelling at a guest who ate yogurt from the hotel’s breakfast bar.

Joshua October, 25, a singer from Boston, Mass. recently completed a two-night stay at the Days Inn in Norfolk, Va. for a local performance. During his Wednesday evening check-in, October helped himself to a few chilled yogurt containers from a common area where breakfast is served. October says employees saw him take the food and allowed it.

The following evening, before catching a ride to his soundcheck, October popped into the lounge for more yogurt, which caught the attention of a male desk clerk. “He’s screaming, ‘You can’t take that yogurt, it’s not breakfast,’” October tells Yahoo Lifestyle. “I said, ‘What’s the issue? The door is open and there’s no sign for the yogurt.’ He didn’t want to hear it.”

“I couldn’t grasp what was going on so my first instinct was to record,” October shares. “He was intimidating me with his crossed arms, so I ate the damn yogurt in front of him.”

“He was calling me ghetto, saying I was in prison,” October said on his tape.

“Come on, boy. Come on, prison boy,” said the clerk. “Look at this hair he has, looks like a f***in’ mop. Look at that sh** all over his face,” about October’s facial tattoos.

“Look how this guy is treating a customer,” responded October.

The man cackled to himself, saying, “I think you better leave before you get yourself in trouble, son.”

October warned that once his video went viral, the employee would lose his job. “I don’t care,” said the man. “You think I’m worried about this job? Do you really think I care about this job? I ain’t going to lose my job over you.”

After telling October to “get the f*** out of here... before I call the cops,” the man appeared to call someone. “Yeah, I don’t care about this chump,” he said to the person on the phone. “He’s a little f***ing street punk, that’s all he is. He ain’t nothing to me. He’s always been nothing, he’ll always be nothing.”

A Days Inn employee in Norfolk, Va. was fired for insulting performer Joshua October who ate a yogurt from the hotel lounge. (Photo: BVA Photos/Bernard Vernon Addo)

October asked for the man’s name and he answered “Cujo,” after the fictional rabid dog from the 1983 Stephen King film. The employee told October he looks like “something that came off the damn trash pile” and the video ended.

“That messed me up the whole day,” October says. “I already have anxiety and this triggered it. He was profiling me — for my race and appearance. To him, I looked like a gang member.”

A representative for the Norfolk Police Department tells Yahoo Lifestyle there were no police calls for the incident. A spokesperson for Wyndham Worldwide, which owns Days Inn, tells Yahoo Lifestyle the employee was fired by the hotel’s owner.

“The comments made by this individual are deeply troubling and are in no way reflective of our brand values or our expectations of franchisees,” the brand said in a statement to Yahoo Lifestyle. “Upon learning of this incident, we immediately reached out to the hotel's owner, who has since informed us that the individual in question is no longer an employee of the hotel. We extend our sincere apologies to this guest, who will be receiving a full refund from the hotel along with additional compensation as a goodwill gesture on behalf of the brand.”

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