Alleged 'Dine-and-Dash Dater' Faces 13 Years in Prison

Paul Gonzales charged with extortion, grand theft
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 28, 2018 9:35 AM CDT
Eight women were left with bills totaling almost $1,000.   (Getty Images/AIMSTOCK)

(Newser) – A man who fled at least 10 restaurant dates without paying his bill, earning him the title of "Dine-and-Dash Dater," has finally been nabbed, say law enforcement officials in California. Paul Gonzales, 45, pleaded not guilty Monday to extortion, attempted extortion, grand theft, and petty theft charges, reports Fox News. The LA County District Attorney's Office describes as a two-year scheme in which Gonzalez allegedly targeted women he met on dating websites and apps. From May 2016 to April 2018, Gonzales allegedly chowed down on meals at restaurants in Pasadena, Long Beach, Burbank, and Los Angeles before sneaking away on the pretext of making a phone call or using the bathroom.

Eight women were left with bills totaling more than $950, while restaurants picked up the check in two other cases, reports NBC Los Angeles. Gonzales also is accused of running out of a hair salon without paying for services, reports WREG. Held on $315,000 bail, he faces up to 13 years in state prison if convicted, the DA's office says. "He doesn't have to worry about any meals now; he's gonna get three square meals a day," one of his alleged victims tells CBS Los Angeles. Gonzales is next to appear in court on Sept. 7. (Read more California stories.)

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