DELAWARE CITY, Del. (WTXF) - Video of a woman verbally berating a veteran for having his service dog inside a local restaurant has gone viral.
Now, the woman at the center of it all says she and her family are being harassed and reached out to FOX 29 to tell her side of the story.
The video starts with the woman screaming at a group of people after she was apparently upset by the presence of that veteran's PTSD service dog, a Great Dane.
"The dog's body was about the same height as the table. Basically, the butt was sitting in front of me at the table," Ciara Miller, the woman seen yelling in the video, explained.
Miller says she went with her family to Kathy's Crab House in Delaware City last week and was unable to eat comfortably with the veteran's Service Dog right there.
In the aftermath of the incident, she claims a staff member and others immediately made the situation racial.
"6 or 7 people yelling out, (expletive) you, get that (expletive) out of here, making derogatory racial statements," Miller claimed.
We did not hear any racial epithets in a video that's been viewed more than half a million times, but FOX 29's Dave Kinchen watched the video with her asking what she was thinking the whole time.
"No, actually I don't regret how vocal I was. I reacted based on the way they reacted to me," Miller explained.
The American's With Disabilities Act mandates that restaurants host customers who have service animals.
The video shows people defending the veteran, identified as retired US Air National Guard Force Master Sgt. Bill Austin.
FOX 29 contacted the restaurant for comment on the claim that staff members used racial slurs, and we were told "no comment" and referred to a statement they published on Facebook. The restaurant also announced they would be organizing a fundraiser for veterans to raise awareness.
You can read their statement below:
"We would like to express at this time how sorry we are over the embarrassing turn of events that occurred earlier this week in our restaurant, here in Delaware City. It is unfortunate that some of the public are not familiar with federal regulations regarding service animals, which, in fact, do permit service animals into establishments such as grocery stores, public buildings and restaurants, giving aid and comfort to their masters in their time of need. That being said, we would like to take what may have been perceived as a negative incident and turn this into a positive opportunity, by educating and enlightening the public about the role of service animals and how they help and serve many returning veterans who have suffered serious wounds and injuries, as well as those veterans suffering from PTSD. So, at this time, we would like to announce that we will be sponsoring a fundraising effort for veterans and service animals thru the Montana Wounded Warriors. We would like to enlist your help as a sponsor, volunteer, or as a donor and help us enlighten and educate the public as well as to help those veterans in need. Details need to be finalized at this time, but as they come together, we will make additional announcements to keep you apprised of our progress."