Gladys Knight's Fried Chicken Restaurant Raided After Criminal Investigation

Chicken & Waffle restaurant run by R&B singer's son at center of investigation of $1 million fraud. 

By Benjamin H. Smith

Agents of the Georgia Department of Revenue raided three Gladys Knight’s Chicken & Waffles restaurants as well as the chain’s corporate headquarters Tuesday. The raid was part of an investigation into financial impropriety committed by her son Shanga Hankerson. Law enforcement authorities were unsuccessful in serving Hankerson an arrest warrant at his Atlanta home.


Shanga Hankersonn is accused of “stealing over $650,000 in both sales and withholding tax, (with) penalties and interest, it’s up to over $1 million owed.,” according to  special investigator Josh Waites. Lawyers for Hankersonn are trying to work out a deal to reopen the restaurants, which were shuttered following the raid. Though the chain uses Gladys Knight’s name, in a statement following the raid a spokesman for Knight said the legendary R&B singer is “not involved in any way with the operation of the restaurants,” adding, “she is sure that her son and his business partners will rectify the situation.” Authorities say the singer is not being investigated.  

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