Top Dog employee resigns after apparently participating in white nationalist rally in Charlottesville

Byby Melanie Woodrow KGO logo
Tuesday, August 15, 2017
Top Dog employee resigns after apparently participating in white nationalist rally
A Top Dog restaurant employee who allegedly attended a white nationalist rally Friday in Charlottesville, Virginia, resigned from the restaurant Saturday.

BERKELEY, Calif. (KGO) -- A popular Berkeley restaurant thrust into the spotlight for an employee called out for having been in Charlottesville now says that employee wasn't fired, he resigned. Top Dog restaurant is responding to a flurry of social media activity in a statement posted on its door.

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The statement says in part, "We do not endorse hatred or any illegal conduct. It simply is not part of our culture."

This past weekend the restaurant was flooded with messages after someone on social media identified White as having been at the rally in Charlottesville.

"I don't know why someone who supports that would be in this very liberal city and town," said UC Berkeley Freshman Alexia Jones.

Top Dog says it spoke with White Saturday.

"During that conversation Cole chose to voluntarily resign his employment with top dog and we accepted his resignation," the restaurant said in its statement.

Attorney Harmeet Dhillon is California's RNC National Committeewoman.

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"If you are holding flags and chanting and doing hail Hitler salutes in a public place I think it's just karma that it turns out people can identify you from modern technology," said Dhillon.

Sunday a concerning blog post prompted someone to call Berkeley Police reporting what they believed was a credible threat to Top Dog's three locations.

"There was enough going on in the threat itself that we felt it necessary on our part to assign officers to those locations," said Berkeley Police Sgt. Andrew Frankel.

Officers were not assigned to Top Dog Monday but Sgt. Frankel said they would provide surveillance while on their beats. Berkeley Police say they are still working to determine the credibility of the threat.