OK, don’t blame Gladys Knight, BUT three of her Chicken & Waffle joints did get shut down and the reason why is super shady.
Just because her name is on the building doesn’t mean Gladys is cooking in the kitchen. The restaurants are actually owned by the legendary singer’s son, Shanga Hankerson. And, unfortunately, on Tuesday all three “Gladys Knight Chicken And Waffles” eateries were raided by the Georgia Department of Revenue and shut down under suspicion of missing funds.
Knight’s team immediately released a statement:
“Gladys Knight lent her name to her son’s restaurants in the Atlanta area, similar to a celebrity endorsement,” Knight’s spokeswoman Laura Herlovich said. “Knight was not involved in any way with the operation of the restaurants, and she is sure that her son and his business partners will rectify the situation.”
Rectify indeed! On Wednesday, Hankerson turned himself into authorities on charges of tax evasion. According to the AJC, Shanga “faces two counts of felony theft by taking for some $52,600 in sales tax a Georgia Department of Revenue investigator said was collected in March and April but never sent to the state.” In addition, “Hankerson is accused of taking a total of $650,000 in state sales and withholding taxes, which after penalties and interest totals more than $1 million.”
Yikes! No bond amount was listed for Hankerson in online jail records.