A new report by NBC raises questions about a former Marine’s claims that she was denied a tip while waiting on a family at a restaurant due to her sexual orientation.
Former Lance Cpl. Dayna Morales, an administrative specialist with Marine Air Group 49, who left the service in May, posted a copy of a restaurant receipt to Facebook on Nov. 13. The receipt showed that the customer left no tip, and included the following note: “I’m sorry but I cannot tip because I do not agree with your lifestyle and the way you live your life.”
The image sparked outrage on social media sites and other websites like BuzzFeed. Morales later told NBC she had received money from supporters who wanted to provide her with the tip the customer didn’t leave. She said she was donating a portion of the money — about $3,000 — to the Wounded Warrior Project.
Her boss told NBC people were traveling to the New Jersey restaurant just to meet Morales. They were requesting to be seated in her section, he said.
Now a couple stepped forward to claim they were her customers at the restaurant that day. They told NBC that they did leave a tip, and provided a copy of their credit card reflecting the charges. They requested to remain anonymous, but said they didn’t leave any anti-gay note on the receipt.
They told NBC they believe their receipts were doctored.
“It’s a disgusting thing to do to write that,” the male customer said. “The restaurant profits from this, obviously Dayna is profiting from this, and it’s fraud — it’s a scam.”
The restaurant later released a statement to NBC, which said they were aware of the allegations and had no comment pending an internal investigation.
Morales told NBC she’s sticking with her story and is certain she wasn’t tipped. She also confirmed that she would donate the money received to wounded warriors.