WATCH: Restauranteur Arron Barberian is relieved to have thwarted a mugging, but is fuming at the woman who picked up and left with his dropped phone. Mark Carcasole reports.
TORONTO – Local Toronto restaurateur Arron Barberian is not a man to be messed with.
Although he’s known to serve up one of the city’s meanest steaks, he can also throw his weight against suspected muggers as witnessed in a video he posted on YouTube he aptly named “Smack Down.”
Security footage taken from outside TLP Sandwich shop, a spin-off of Barberian’s Steakhouse, Monday morning shows Barberian walking along Elm Street just steps from his restaurant, when a man jumps him from behind.
“I was walking past this gentleman who saw what I had in my hands and came up to me and looked fairly cheery and then he grabbed hold of the till and eventually a struggle ensued,” said Barberian in an interview with Global News.
Barberian can be seen holding his cash till as both the box full of money and alleged mugger are thrown to the ground during the altercation.
A second video of the incident inside the restaurant shows one of his employees running out to help.
Barberian can be seen tussling with the suspect several times before the two run off screen. The suspect allegedly fled into a nearby parking garage.
“I really didn’t want to touch him too much, so I kind of went old school hockey fight and pulled the jersey over his head and kind of swung him around a little bit. Kind of Tie Domi on him,” he said.
“I didn’t really want to hurt him. I really just wanted him to let go and sit down and wait for the cops.”
Barberian said a woman on the street stole his cell phone which fell on the ground during the fight, however another bystander was able to help collect the money and return it.
“When you watch the video, the worst thing isn’t this gentleman stealing my money and the assault. Later on in the video there’s a woman with red soles on the bottom of her shoes who walks out in the middle of the road, knowingly picks up my cell phone, puts it in her purse and runs off. That’s the real theft,” said Barberian.
The restaurateur says he wasn’t injured in the incident but is in the process of filing a police report.
“He did assault me and was after some money but he obviously has some mental issues or some other problems and I was just trying to get him to sit down and wait,” said Barberian.
“I hope that person gets the help he needs. It’s disturbing to have it happen to you. In the end I tried to hold him for the police but they couldn’t get him in time.”
Barberian, if you recall, is also famous for being the bat-wielding Blue Jays fan at a home game last year.
The video made the rounds on social media and quickly became a viral hit.