Poke Poke restaurant manager fired after allegedly throwing chair at black teen

CHICAGO (WLS) -- A manager at the Poke Poke restaurant in Chicago's Loop was fired after he allegedly threw a chair at a black teen, the company said Thursday.

The manager, identified as Matthew Fezzey, alleged that the teen clenched his fist and made a threat, according to a police report.

The teen, a high school student named John Kyle Johnson, was walking past the restaurant last week when Fezzey motioned him to come inside to confront him and then threw a chair at him. Johnson went to the ER after the chair hit his arm.

RELATED: Black teen says Poke Poke restaurant manager threw chair at him in racially-fueled incident

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Some are calling for a boycott of Poke Poke restaurant in Chicago's Loop after a black teen claims a manager threw a chair at him.

The firing comes after an ABC7 report on Wednesday and calls for a boycott of the restaurant, which is located at 118. S. Wabash Ave.

In a statement on Thursday, Poke Poke said: "First, we again extend our sincere apology to Mr. Johnson for the experience he endured last week. No one should be treated the way he was. After completing an internal investigation, we have decided to terminate employment of the suspended manager involved in the recent incident. We believe in treating everyone with respect and compassion, and his actions were against our principles and values. We will also be providing our staff with management and sensitivity training on customer interaction and conflict de-escalation, so an event like this does not happen again. Poke Poke is a small family-owned business, and we welcome everyone to our store."

After the chair-throwing incident, cellphone video captured Fezzey talking after the incident, telling the teen about recent robberies and incidents involving black men.

Below is some of the conversation between Fezzey and Johnson on the video:

Fezzey: This is the second time in a row, third time in a row. Two days ago, I'm not trying to be racist, two black guys robbed two people right here.

Johnson: Sir, but you threw a chair at me! I'm not those guys!

Fezzey: No, no listen, listen. Three days ago, before that, I had two more black guys, I actually fought them in here. 8 p.m. at night they started threatening my employees and I had to fight them. When you guys came in here, I just get really [expletive] defensive, really defensive. Because I have to [expletive] all the time," the manager said in the video.

Johnson: But you threw a chair at me.

Fezzey: Let's talk over here.... No man, I get it, I'm in the [expletive] wrong, I feel bad. I shouldn't have done that [expletive] man, that was wrong. But I'm not going to lie man. Yo, I'll look in here. I had to fight three people in my restaurant the other day, so I thought I had to fight some more [expletive] people, so I freaked out.
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