Eight days into Autism Awareness month, the owners of a West Sacramento restaurant say their son on the autism spectrum was bullied while working.
- Now to a restaurant employee with special needs bullied while working. Tonight, the owner of Vince's in West Sacramento is outraged. A customer berated a 23-year-old worker with autism.
- CBS 13's, Laura Haefeli with the woman working to turn a negative situation into a learning lesson.
- The Rossi family has owned Vince's for more than 10 years. And their son Giacomo, like so many others with autism, helps out in the restaurant.
- This is our first time that we've seen somebody being so negative, so angry, so different about child.
- On Wednesday, Giacomo was pouring water for customers waiting to go home to watch his favorite television show.
- He was watching Thomas the Train.
- That's when Jackie says one of her customers complained about his behavior to the hostess.
- She started saying, hey, there was this man walking back and forth, and talking about Thomas. The hostess told her, he's just one of the owners. He's a special needs. But that was not enough.
- The customer then complained to the waitress.
- She told her he's a special needs and he's the owner's kids, the second time. So that was not enough.
- So Jackie asked her son to say sorry.
- And he apologized, I'm sorry that I make you uncomfortable.
- The apology wasn't enough the customer took her complaints to Facebook, posting on a discussion board. My first thought was he may be unpredictable or have explosive behavior around our small children. She went on to warn future customers about Giacomo. Writing, if you are unfamiliar and see the owner's son, he may or may not be harmless. I still don't know.
- It was, not only like a hit to our restaurant, but to our family.
- Giacomo's two little sisters say they've never worried about their brother's safety before and hope they won't ever have to again.
- When people say things on the internet like that, it creates these stereotypes that are really harmful for these people who aren't dangerous, they're just different.
- And we did reach out to the customer involved, but she did not want to go on camera.