ST. PETERSBURG - Kristal Walker recently ate at Acropolis Restaurant on Central Avenue in St Petersburg, but claims she found something unusual on her plate.
"It turned out to be a cockroach," Kristal said.
She says she took a picture just before the restaurant manager came over to apologize.
According to the latest inspection report in July, inspectors found almost a dozen live and dead roaches in various parts of the kitchen.
"It's very alarming to know that they had the problem and didn't address the problem to begin with," Kristal said.
Inspectors issued a follow-up inspection but haven't been back yet.
So we went into Acropolis to ask the manager on duty if conditions have improved.
ABC Action News anchor Wendy Ryan met General Manager David Stead at the front desk.
"The latest inspection report was in July and that's when they found live and dead roaches?" Ryan asked.
"I'm sure I'm not aware," Stead responded and didn't seem to know much about all the critical issues or Kristal's bad experience.
"We spoke to a customer who found a roach in her meal and brought it to the manager's attention. This is recently. I don't know if you're aware of that?" Ryan asked Stead.
"No not at all. I haven't heard," Stead responded.
But roaches weren't the only uninvited guests inside the Acropolis kitchen in the last six months. State records reveal in April rodent droppings were discovered all over the kitchen, with inspectors writing "too many to count" in some areas.
And within a seven-month period, Acropolis tallied up 48 critical violations during five inspections from December of 2011 and July of 2012.
In July some of those critical issues included employees using bare hands on ready to eat foods, food stored on the floor, and employees not certified with proper training.
We showed Kristal that inspection history.
"It's very scary to know that someone's kitchen is that dirty that they're not taking the precautions they need to run a clean business," Kristal commented.
But Stead disagrees, saying all is well.
"We run a clean establishment and we've been here for almost 2 years," Stead said.
Response from Acropolis Restaurant Owner
This is Costa Waez from Acropolis Greek Taverna. I wanted to explain all the issues regarding the health inspection because I believe it was mishandled by one of our managers, David Stead in the St. petersburg location. As you know, our record inspection is out for public access and view. You recognize in the health report was listed "dead roaches in the dishwasher area", meaning we use a good pest control company to eliminate any problems and performs the job 3 to 4 times a month, and when needed on call. As you see, on the recent health inspection visit after the incident, the inspector indicated no violation has occurred in our restaurant, especially regarding pest control matters.
I would like to assure you that we take a priority in our restaurant's health and cleaning. You may come visit anytime you prefer to any of our locations to check out our establishment.
Acropolis Greek Taverna