An incendiary note on a receipt sparked outrage on social media this month — but now the waiter who shared the story admits none of it was real.
Khalil Cavil, a 20-year-old server at Saltgrass Steak House in Odessa, Texas, first posted a photo of the receipt on social media on July 16.
The $108 bill appeared to not include a tip and included a scrawled note of “We don’t tip terrorist” across the top. Cavil’s name was also circled.
“Last night I received this note at one my tables. At the moment I didn’t know what to think or say. I was sick to my stomach,” Cavil wrote on Facebook earlier this month, alongside a photo of the receipt. “I share this because I want people to understand that this racism, and this hatred still exists. Although, this is nothing new, it is still something that will test your faith.”
While Saltgrass Steak House initially responded to the incident by banning the customer believed to have left the note from their restaurant, Terry Turney, COO of Saltgrass Steak House, explained in a statement to The Odessa American on Monday that further investigation revealed that Cavil “fabricated” the entire story.
“The customer has been contacted and invited back to our restaurant to dine on us,” said Turney. “Racism of any form is intolerable, and we will always act swiftly should it occur in any of our establishments. Falsely accusing someone of racism is [equally] disturbing.”
Cavil’s posts have since been deleted.
Cavil admitted to writing the note in an interview with The Odessa American on Monday.
“I did write it. I don’t have an explanation. I made a mistake. There is no excuse for what I did,” he said. He did not offer any further explanation as to why he did it.
Cavil, who told The Odessa American that he came clean to Saltgrass officials on Sunday, is no longer employed by the company, the outlet reports.
In a statement to The Odessa American, Cavil stated that the donations he received, which reportedly totaled about $1,000, are being “processed and return[ed].”
He continued, “Most all of it has been returned.”
Perhaps ironically, Cavil had pledged to donate the funds raised after the alleged Islamaphobic attack to his Christian church to help “spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ to different places around the world.”
“Let’s make the enemy pay by helping other people establish the Kingdom of God here on earth,” he wrote.
[Photo: Facebook/Khalil Cavil]