Challengers restaurant owner explains mistake that led to overcharging diners

AURORA, Colo.  -- Customers contacted the FOX31 Problem Solvers to say they were overcharged after a eating at an Aurora restaurant.

Open for nearly nine years, Jim Smith said Challengers, his restaurant and bar, is a busy little spot. On a typical weeknight there are maybe 150 to 200 charges, he said.

And with business, he said, mistakes are going to happen.

"We do try to take care of problems that are ours," he said.

Several times in the past month, customers reported charges that didn't match their receipts.

Jeree Fields said her $20 bill and $3 tip nearly doubled on her credit card statement.

“It clearly says $20 and then I showed my bank statement as to where it came out as $39,” Fields said.

Earlier this week, Nicole Keys said the same thing happened to her.

“CapitalOne sent me the email saying, hey this is a heads up did you mean to leave this generous tip because $20 on a $40 tab," Keys said.

But Smith said it’s not as it looks. It's an honest mistake.

“If they go past one credit card, this is what can happen,” Smith said.

He said it's an issue in his point of sale system.

“We don't do separate checks,” Smith said.

Because the system doesn’t allow that, he said this can happen when a table splits the check and the server forgets to override the system.

"If they split checks and let's say there are two or three credit cards to pay that check and they don't change the table code, it will all revert back to one card," he said.

He also said he rights the wrongs of his restaurant's mistakes.

Keys was already issued a refund.

“She called and I talked to her and I looked it up and I called her back the same day and I wrote her a check for the $20,” he said.

He also said he cut a check to Fields on Wednesday morning.

Everyone said when splitting a check, the best thing to do is use cash so something like this can’t happen. It makes it easier on both you and the server involved.