'Dine and Dash' Dater Learns His Fate

Paul Gonzales will spend 120 days in jail
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 22, 2018 2:47 AM CST

(Newser) – Serial "dine and dash" dater Paul Gonzales is going to continue getting free meals—but he's not going to be able to run away afterward. The 45-year-old Los Angeles County man was sentenced to 120 days in prison Tuesday after pleading no contest to three misdemeanor counts of defrauding an innkeeper by nonpayment and one misdemeanor count of petty theft, KTLA reports. Prosecutors said that between May 2016 and April 2018. Gonzales met women online on dating sites like Bumble, invited them to dinner at LA-area restaurants, then disappeared on the pretext of making a phone call or using the bathroom, leaving the date to pay a bill that usually came to more than $100.

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Gonzales, who is expected to start serving his sentence in January, was also given three years of probation and banned from using dating apps and websites, the BBC reports. Gonzales was originally charged with multiple felonies, including extortion and grand theft, and could have faced up to 13 years in prison, but Superior Court Judge Darrell Mavis dropped the felony charges last month, the Pasadena Star News reports. He said the women humiliated by Gonzales' behavior were victims. "But victims of what crime? ... That’s really the issue," he said. Gonzales has also been ordered to pay restitution to four businesses, including a hair salon he fled from in a smock. (This dating app took on a "very tricky battle.")

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