Thrown jalapeno, battery at Carl's Jr.

Jalapeño toss turns into heated battle

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POST FALLS — A taste test wasn't even required for this jalapeño moment to turn heated.

A man allegedly threw a jalapeño pepper at a group eating at a nearby table at Carl's Jr. inside Love's Travel Stop early Sunday morning, according to a Post Falls Police report.

The male who was struck by the flying food approached the three men to ask if one of them threw the pepper and shook one of the men's hand, the report states.

"(The victim) stated he noticed three males sitting across the room laughing after the food was thrown, so he confronted them," the report states. "He asked if they had thrown a piece of food and attempted to shake their hands and walk away."

However, the victim was then allegedly punched multiple times causing trauma to his mouth and face. Medics treated the 33-year-old Hayden man on scene and it was recommended that he see a dentist immediately due to severe injuries to his mouth.

"After shaking one male's hand and nothing happening, he attempted to shake a second male's hand," the report states. "This male then grabbed his hand and pulled (the victim) toward him. (The victim) advised he pushed the second male away and, as he did so, he was punched in the face by the second male."

The victim told police he did not remember anything after the first punch. He told police he did not lose consciousness, but did not see who was hitting him due to his face being down.

The alleged victim was with two other people at the restaurant. Both of those witnesses told police one of the men punched the victim in the face and another male pushed the victim to the ground and hit him a few more times before the fight was broken up. At one point, the victim hit his face on the corner of a steel counter, the report states.

An employee who helped break up the fight told police the same account about what happened. A store video of the incident also verified the testimonies.

"One of the craziest nights I've had at work yet," Donald Sampson wrote on Facebook about the incident.

Sheri Rardon praised her son who works at the business for breaking up the "nonsense."

"Really people?" she wrote. "A fight over a jalapeño? Ridiculous."

The group of three who allegedly started the altercation left the business in a dark Cadillac STS. Law enforcement was unable to locate the vehicle, but a license plate number was obtained.

One of the suspects who allegedly battered the victim is a 22-year-old from Priest River. The names of the suspects were not released on Tuesday due to the ongoing investigation.

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