Texts show manager firing student who asked off for funeral

EWING, N.J. (AP) — A text exchange shows a New Jersey restaurant manager firing an employee after she asked for time off to attend a friend's funeral.

The student's texts with her manager at Cafe 72 in Ewing showed her explaining that she wanted to take off for the funeral of Michael Sot, 20, a student at The College of New Jersey.

Sot died this month after the car in which he was the designated driver was hit by an allegedly drunken driver. The driver now faces a vehicular homicide charge.

The manager, identified only as Katie, responded by telling the unidentified employee "I have to let you go" amid a testy exchange.

The manager said that she was "sick of all staff not taking their job seriously," adding that she had "a business to run at the end of the day."

After the exchange made headlines and drew criticism, Cafe 72 posted a lengthy apology to its now-deleted Facebook page and says it donated $1,000 to a Sot fundraiser.

In the post, the restaurant's owner contended that the employee wasn't actually fired and that the conversation was displayed out of context by a friend of the employee. "This private conversation was not related in any way to the mourning of Michael," the post said.

The post then said there was nothing excusing the language used in the text exchange.