ST. LOUIS – The general manager at Tucker’s Place responds to the growing outrage and calls for accountability after a customer at the steakhouse in Soulard left without paying, and explains what they’re doing to combat the ongoing trend seen around town.

During Tuesday’s midday lunch rush, one man left a bad taste in management’s mouths.

“It gets frustrating, because it’s happening more and more often,” said Todd Westcott, restaurant general manager.

After ordering an appetizer, a meal and a martini, the man ordered a 14-inch steak food to go. Westcott claims that’s when the customer put his plan in motion.

Seen on surveillance video, when the man enters, he’s happily chatting with the hostess, but when he leaves, he walks right past her and out the front door on a phone call. A call Westcott said was used as a distraction.

They later realized he left without paying the bill.

“It’s become a common trend. I think people feel that nothing is going to happen to them, they can get away with it,” Westcott said. “Even if they get caught, what’s going to happen to them? And I think that’s the issue here in St. Louis City.”

Unfortunately, Tucker’s is a weekly victim of dine and dashers. Westcott said they’re not alone.

That’s why they decided to post about the incident on Facebook.

“We’re not going to get our money back, but it saves somebody else; that’s important,” Westcott said.

Hundreds of comments led to the man’s identity and sparked a viral conversation about the lack of respect many are feeling in the St. Louis restaurant industry.

“It’s unfortunate. It not only hurts the business, but it hurts the waiters and waitresses that work at Tucker’s,” said Soulard resident Megan Mccafrey.

“You’re not going to get away with it, there’s cameras everywhere, people know you, so stop!” said Tucker’s customer Cathy Meggs.

Tucker’s will hire security starting May 1, to hopefully deter more customers from avoiding responsibility.