Surveillance video from inside Qualia Coffee in D.C.'s Petworth neighborhood shows a man taking a drink of water and spitting it at the employees on Monday.
“There’s always better ways to handle stuff than that,” said Bruce Miller, a Takoma Park resident who was visiting the coffee shop on Tuesday.
Joel Finkelstein owns Qualia Coffee. He says the man in the video was told previously not to come back. The incident happened, he says, after a worker asked him to leave.
“He goes to leave, grabs a glass of water on his way out, and promptly sprays it all over my counter staff,” Finkelstein said, of what happened.
He says it’s not as surprising as he’d like it to be.
“To some extent, there’s that gallows humor of a ridiculous story to tell people and just hoping it doesn’t happen to anybody else,” he said.
The employee that it happened to did not want to talk on camera on Tuesday.
“It increases your anxiety about customer interaction, but they handled it with aplomb,” Finkelstein said, of the employees seen in the video.
The video was posted on Facebook. In the post, the shop says that the man "has shown a pattern of disrespect towards our female staff."