Man Sentenced to 3 Years in Jail For Not Paying Restaurant Tab

Had been arrested 70 times and was released from jail the day before for not paying another restaurant tab


Anthony M. Malabehar finished a sumptuous meal that included crab, lobsters and dessert and then announced that he had no money to pay the $69.27 tab.

He was arrested, pleaded guilty and earlier this month was sentenced to three years in prison.

In delivering the prison term, the judge took into consideration that Malabehar, 47, of Mattoon, Ill., had 70 prior arrests. He also had been released from jail the day before his meal for not paying at another restaurant.

Malabehar made his menu choices at the Alamo Steakhouse on April 4.

"He ordered a filet, snow crab, lobster pinches, snickers pie, two shots of rumple minz, and a Mike's hard lemonade," a spokeswoman for Alamo Steak House said.

But when the check came for $69.27, he refused to pay.

"He came up to the server and said 'Let me let you in on a secret, I don't have any money," she said. "So the server went to the manager, who called the police. The police informed the manager that this guy has been going all over town and eating at restaurants without paying."

NEXT: Jeff Garlin Arrested Over Weekend After Parking Space Dispute

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  1. Clearly the guy’s a shitbag but 3 years for $70 of crab is not at all a proportional sentence, regardless of his prior criminal history.

  2. I think they sentenced him for his cumulative offenses – 3 years for 70 arrests works out to about 2 months for each offense. That is steep but his overall larceny works out to about $5000 if each meal was the price of his last one. I believe in most, if not all, states that counts as grand larceny.

    There’s probably a better way to deal with this – maybe putting him on a “no serve” list for restaurants but that may be impractical.

    Others routinely bilk the system in other ways for much more money. Many people routinely abuse emergency departments for far greater sums in free medical care, taxi service, food, drink and lodging. Their abuse delays care for the truly sick. And the law forces hospitals to tolerate this abuse.

  3. Man sentenced to 3 years of free food for not paying restaurant tab…

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