NORTH NAPLES, Fla.- A man says he was knocked to the ground and denied entry to a bar because he brought a service dog.
Jon Lepsico walked up to Pelican Larry’s on Pine Ridge Road with two friends and his service dog when he said bouncers stopped him. He said an argument ensued over his Goldendoodle Murphy and he ended up on the ground with cuts and bruises.
“That’s a road rash type of thing,” said Lepsico. “The one guy pinned me to the ground, I was on my back then the other guy grabbed my legs and hogtied me.”
The security supervisor of the bar, Tony Frangie, said he told Lepsico to wait at the door because the bar was full and he needed to find them a table out of the way.
“We can’t sit him anywhere but we always have dogs in here, it’s not a big deal,” said Frangie.
“I have had people question me which is total legal when it’s not apparent but you can see on his back service dog,” said Lepsico. “Not every disability is visible and I’m sad it escalated to this type of situation.”
Lepsico says he suffers from an endocrine system dysfunction and feels he was discriminated against.
The bouncers said Lepisco landed on the ground because he pulled away from the bouncer.
“One of my bouncers tried to hold him and they both fell on the floor,” said Frangie. “It’s all ridiculous.”
Lepsico did end up going inside the bar to have a drink with his friends and said he did so because he was still in shock. He is now pressing charges and detectives took pictures of his injuries.