DESTIN, Fla. (WKRG) – Earlier this week WKRG reported several Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen locations have closed after notices were seen posted on the doors of the Destin location.
News 5 has learned the management company overseeing those locations was Phoenix Hospitality. We reached out to Phoenix Hospitality for comment, but all of our emails were kicked back.
Phoenix Hospitality operated four of these restaurants and had plans of opening a 5th location at OWA in Foley this year. Since that time, News 5 has learned a new team will be overseeing the restaurant at OWA, with a projected opening date of mid-December.
“Unfortunately, Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen’s licensing partner, Phoenix Hospitality, has decided to close its Destin and Panama City Beach, Florida locations. Paula Deen Ventures plans to work with the landlords at these locations while considering to reopen them next Spring. The possible restructuring of the businesses would provide our guests with exceptional dining experience that lives up to our brand standards. Our sincere thanks to the community and our wonderful employees for their support and loyalty,” said Jaret T. Keller with Key Group Worldwide.
We reached out to Key Group Worldwide for additional comment, but our calls and emails weren’t returned.
Kevin Kenneth Toth, who served as Director of Operations at Phoenix Hospitality, was arrested on October 1, 2019 at the Destin location of Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen. He was arrested by the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office on a warrant out of Tarrant County, Texas.
News 5 reached out to Fort Worth Police who confirm Toth is in jail on an aggravated sexual assault charge against a child.
“We also checking with our Crimes Against Children Unit to see what we can release without comprising with the integrity of the investigation and or court proceedings,” Fort Worth Police told News 5.
The Tarrant County District Attorney’s Office couldn’t comment on the allegations against the restaurant manager.
“He was arrested and is charged for the offense of Aggravated Sexual Assault with a Child. His next court setting will be on 12/2 in Criminal District Court No. 1,” said Sam Jordan.
“Stay tuned for all of Paula’s new restaurants opening in 2019 and 2020, including; Gulf Shores/Orange Beach, Alabama at OWA in mid-December 2019 and Nashville, TN at Opry Mills in Spring 2020. Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen’s current locations include Pigeon Forge, TN, Myrtle Beach, SC, and recently opened Branson, Missouri,” the statement read from Key Group Worldwide.