Heartless Dunkin' Donuts employees dump cold water on homeless man sleeping in the restaurant
The victim was later identified as 25-year-old Jeremy Youngs Dufresne and he can be heard mumbling in the video that he had fallen asleep there by accident
The shocking moment in which two cruel employees from Dunkin' Donuts poured a jug of water on a homeless man who was sleeping at the outlet in Syracuse, New York, was captured on camera and has now gone viral. The footage shows an employee taunting the sleeping man by saying "You want to sleep?." The video then continues and shows him dumping an entire pitcher of water on the man's head as he was sleeping at a table in the restaurant. Another employee, the one who was filming the whole thing, can be heard laughing as the man gets soaked with the cold water and gets up with a shock.
The man immediately grabs his phone and the charger from the table reported the Daily Mail. The employee who poured the water can be heard saying in the video: "How many times I got to tell you to stop sleeping in here, my n***a? You here all day, you have enough time [in here] … How many times have the customers and the people going to tell you to stop sleeping in here?"
The man was later identified as 25-year-old Jeremy Youngs Dufresne, and he can be heard mumbling in the video that he had fallen asleep there by accident. The employee can be heard warning him: "No it wasn't on accident bro. You know I'm not playing with you. I ain't gonna call the cops like I said, you gotta get out of here."
The 36-second long video was uploaded to Facebook on September 30 after which it went viral. The video has over 36k shares and has been viewed 2 million times. According to Syracuse.com, Dufresne, a homeless man, is a regular at the outlet on North Salina Street in Syracuse so that he can charge his phone. He has said that he lives outside because he prefers that even though his family has tried to make him move in with them.
His family has also added that he suffers from schizophrenia. Dufresne has spoken out after the incident and has said that he does not have any anger towards the employees even after they poured water on him. He said: "He probably had some personal problems of his own and needed someone to talk to. And he took it out on someone else, like me."
Dufresne has said that he left the outlet without saying anything. A spokesperson for Dunkin' Donuts told the Daily Mail that they had been "extremely disturbed" after they saw the video and the employees responsible have since been suspended.
Dunkin' Franchisee and Chief Operating Officer Kimberly Wolak said: "It not only violated our written policies but goes against our core values as an organization — which include creating a welcoming and hospitable environment and treating everyone with dignity and respect. The employees involved in the incident have been suspended pending a complete investigation, and we will be contacting the individual in the video to apologize for the negative experience."
Wolak has also said that the company is going to be working with local advocates so that they can educate their staff on how to engage with homeless customers better. The viral video ended up turning the outlet into the venue of a protest with many advocates showing up and starting a boycott at the Dunkin' Donuts outlet. The protesters have also demanded that the employees from the video be fired.
On October 1 afternoon, a homeless outreach group called We Rise Above the Street went to the outlet and confronted the manager of that particular Dunkin' Donuts and launched a protest outside the store. About 20 people actively took part in the protest.
A GoFundMe page has since been launched to help and support Dufresne. The page has raised $5,656 in 22 hours. It surpassed its original goal of $150. The man who uploaded the video to Facebook initially, Samuel Breazeale, was the one who started the campaign and put up an update saying: "Thank you!!!! (Update) I finally got in contact with his brother and mom. All proceeds made are going to Jeremy and family to help him get on his feet so there will be no more nights at Dunkin Donuts."