Austin restaurant owner attacked; police searching for group responsible

Sergio Alberto Vasquez owns Cheko’s Mexican Restaurant and said after a group refused to pay their bill, the situation escalated.

AUSTIN, Texas — Sergio Alberto Vasquez is celebrating 16 years of service at his restaurant, Cheko’s Mexican Restaurant & Bar.

However, instead of marking the occasion, he and his family are reeling from the aftermath of an attack Vasquez suffered on April 28.

Vasquez, who is over 70 years old, said he got a call from staff that Sunday about three customers causing problems. When he got there, he confronted the group.

Vasquez explained in Spanish that the customers claimed they didn’t like the food and were not going to pay for it. Vasquez said he accepted that, simply saying that if they weren’t going to pay, it was “no problem,” but that they needed to leave immediately.

The group did eventually leave, but not before they began smashing plates on the floor – an act caught on surveillance video.

“I wanted to make sure they left so they didn’t cause any more damage in the restaurant,” Vasquez said in Spanish. “At the same time, I took out my phone so I can take photos of their license plates. And when one of the guys saw me going to take a photo, he got out of the car and started hitting me.”

Vasquez said punches were thrown and his phone was slapped out of his hand. Moments later, customers inside watching the attack unfold stepped outside to help.

Cellphone video shows the group attack the customers in question and Vasquez attempting to help them. 

“I appreciate them so much, that they came out to defend me because had it not been for them, I wouldn’t be sitting here right now talking,” Vasquez said.

However, Vasquez said he felt bad that his customers had to witness the incident. 

“I feel so bad over what happened – my clients who have come here for years – the ones that were here, I give them my apologies. It’s not what I wanted,” Vasquez said. 

Vasquez’s daughter said he’s someone who takes pride in his job and after learning what happened to her father, she took matters into her own hands and posted the videos of what happened to social media.

“Most of the people that come here that are his customers, they don’t just see him like another guy. They see him like, ‘Oh, Grandpa/Dad.’ Everybody goes up and hugs him. Everybody gives him love,” Maria Vasquez said.

The Austin Police Department (APD) is investigating this case. Officials said no suspects were found in the area, and no arrests have been made. 

Anyone with any information is urged to call APD. An anonymous tip may also be submitted through the Capital Area Crime Stoppers program by visiting or calling 512-472-8477.

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