California man Paul Guadalupe Gonzales has been accused of conning his victims in a rather unusual way — by wining and dining them before leaving them with the bill. With Los Angeles prosecutors having charged the alleged “dine-and-dash dater” with four new counts of extortion, some of the women whom he supposedly dated opened up to CNN, sharing details of the dates they had with Gonzales.
In a phone interview with CNN, a woman who declined further identification aside from the pseudonym Jane related the “humiliating” experience she allegedly had with the 45-year-old Gonzales, whom she claims left her with a hefty bill at Houston’s Restaurant in Pasadena. She said that the pair had first met on Bumble, a dating app that “levels the playing field” by only allowing women to make the first contact with male users in heterosexual matches.
“We just chatted back and forth. He was charming,” Jane recalled.
“He said, ‘Why not meet somewhere?'”
As Jane further related, Gonzales ordered drinks when they arrived at Houston’s, then chose the most expensive item the restaurant had to offer. Jane added that Gonzales told her in advance that he needed to make a phone call to check on his sick aunt in the hospital. After making this call, the so-called “dine-and-dash dater” allegedly vanished, unexpectedly leaving Jane with a bill worth $218.
“He left after most of his food was gone. I’ve never seen anybody eat so fast.”
Paul Guadalupe Gonzales faces seven counts of extortion, two counts of attempted extortion, and one count of grand theft. https://t.co/znqcs0CRuE
— TheBlaze (@theblaze) August 28, 2018
Another woman, Carol Meredith, also spoke to CNN about how Paul Guadalupe Gonzales allegedly duped her on a date. Likewise, Meredith and Gonzales also met on Bumble and agreed to eat out at a Pasadena restaurant. Further details on the date were mostly not disclosed, but Meredith told CNN that managers at Mercado’s were able to assist her and pick up her tab after Gonzales allegedly disappeared during their date.
“I just kind of feel like maybe online dating might not be for me. I mean, there are a lot of scammers out there,” said Meredith.
Both Jane and Meredith related to CNN how Gonzales supposedly charmed them by saying the right things and making himself appear like a man who cared for his family. Aside from the alleged “dine-and-dash dater” using his aunt as an excuse to disappear during his date with Jane, Meredith told CNN that she once received a text from Gonzales where he talked about “walking to have dinner with my mom.”
“I feel like any man who loves his mother is probably going to love me in the right way,” Meredith recalled.
Apart from being accused of conning women through his exploits as the “dine-and-dash dater,” Paul Guadalupe Gonzales reportedly left at least two hair salons without paying for a dye job, thus making him a suspected “dye-and-dash” customer as well, CNN wrote. On top of the 11 counts of extortion and two counts of attempted extortion he is facing, Gonzales is also being charged with petty theft for one of the “dye-and-dash” incidents. He is scheduled for a preliminary court hearing on Tuesday as he remains behind bars, with bail set at $315,000.