SOUTHINGTON - Local attorney and restaurant owner Cheryl Moran has been arrested following an altercation with two customers outside her restaurant, Anthony Jacks Wood Fired Grill, over the winter.
Police said Wednesday that Moran, 50, of Southington, faces charges of third-degree assault, unlawful restraint, making a false statement and two counts of second-degree breach of peace.
She turned herself in last week and is scheduled to appear in Bristol Superior Court next Monday. She is free on a promise to appear.
Moran, who owns multiple restaurants in town, declined to comment Wednesday, deferring to her attorney, Kristen Mostowy. Mostowy said her client denies what has been alleged.
“She disputes the charges,” the Bristol-based attorney said.
Mostowy added that it is too early in the case to “rush to judgment.”
Police said Moran faces charges related to an incident on Feb. 16, when she was involved in an altercation with a man and a woman outside Anthony Jacks, at 30 Center St. According to the arrest warrant, the two alleged victims, a husband and wife, had been in the bar area of the restaurant for some time waiting for a table to open up. They left after not being asked if they wanted a drink or an appetizer, they told police.
On the way out, the husband, 43, said something disparaging about the restaurant, the warrant said. The husband and wife, 34, maintained to police that he was speaking to a group of people at the hostess podium, while Moran, according to the warrant, contends that the man used an obscenity and yelled at a young hostess.
Moran, police wrote in the warrant, followed the couple outside, where she allegedly pushed the husband and yelled at him, the complainants told police. His wife then got in between the man and Moran, who allegedly continued to try to get to him, the warrant said.
As the complainants walked away, they told police, Moran continued to follow them and grabbed the woman’s ponytail, jerking her head back multiple times, according to the warrant. The woman eventually fell on top of Moran and grabbed at Moran’s cell phone, the warrant said. Moran yelled for her to let go of her phone, and the woman said she would as soon as Moran let go of her hair, the document continued.
The two were then separated by the husband and a worker at Anthony Jacks. Both Moran and the couple called police.
The woman sought medical treatment at an urgent care facility and was diagnosed with a neck sprain, a laceration to her ear from her earring getting pulled, a contusion to her thumb and hand and a sprain to her toe and ankle, according to the warrant.
Moran gave police a different version of events, telling officers she followed the couple outside to protect her restaurant staff. As she did, police wrote in the warrant, Moran alleges that the husband got in her face and his wife shoved her. As the attorney reached for her phone, she told police, the woman grabbed it and refused to give it back. Moran said she grabbed for her phone and got into a tussle with the woman, according to the warrant.
Moran said the woman then knocked her down, hitting her head on concrete, before strangling her for several seconds, cutting off her ability to breathe, the warrant said. Moran said she was able to get her phone back shortly after the woman got off of her.
Police in the warrant said they used surveillance footage in the area and a witness to dispute Moran’s allegations.
Justin Muszynski can be reached at 860-973-1809 or email@example.com.