SAPD peppered with calls for tougher charges against suspect in Whataburger attack

Kino Jimenez, 30, charged with felony theft

SAN ANTONIO – The San Antonio Police Department has received numerous calls from people demanding more severe charges be levied against a man at the center of a viral video at a Whataburger, a police spokesman said.

Kino Jimenez, 30, was arrested Thursday night on a charge of theft of person.

Jimenez is accused of launching an attack on a teenager at a Northeast Side Whataburger restaurant that was caught on camera.

In the video, which was shared widely across social media, a man is seen throwing a drink at someone, then walking off while cussing and carrying a red hat bearing the slogan, "Make America Great Again."

According to an arrest warrant affidavit, police received several tips identifying Jimenez as the man in the video.

The affidavit said the owner of the hat who was splashed with soda is a 16-year-old boy.

The teen told investigators that Jimenez approached his table inside the Nacogdoches Road restaurant around 2 a.m. on July Fourth and asked why he was wearing the hat.

The teen replied that he was supporting the president, the affidavit said. 

What happened next was caught on video, the report said. 

After investigating, police took Jimenez into custody.

On his way out of jail early Friday morning, he tried at first to avoid a KSAT 12 News camera.

Once the camera was turned off, he spoke briefly, saying what happened was a lapse in judgment that was out of character for him.

Jimenez said seeing the hat had the same effect on him that a Ku Klux Klan hood would have had.

He said since the video went viral, he and his family have been receiving threats.

Officer Carlos Ortiz, a police spokesman, said SAPD has heard from a number of people who believe Jimenez should have been charged with assault rather than theft.

A felony theft charge is unusual in a case like this, Ortiz said.

The decision to charge Jimenez with theft was made based on the investigation, Ortiz said.

Jimenez was released from jail after posting $5,000 bond.


About the Author:

Katrina Webber joined KSAT 12 in December 2009. She reports for Good Morning San Antonio. Katrina was born and raised in Queens, NY, but after living in Gulf Coast states for the past decade, she feels right at home in Texas. It's not unusual to find her singing karaoke or leading a song with her church choir when she's not on-air.