TAMPA, Florida -- Reggie Hines loved the food at Tampa's Loving Hut restaurant.
"It's 100 percent vegetarian cuisine, no meat what so ever," said Hines of the restaurant he would visit once a week for lunch.
But all that changed after a recent visit in early July.
"As I'm waiting, I'm looking around and I notice three roaches," said Hines. "German cockroaches- I think they're nasty!"
Hines said he notified management who didn't seem concerned...
"If they're in the dining room area, they're definitely in the kitchen."
PHOTOS:Lots NOT to love after state inspects local Loving Hut
So instead, he filed a complaint with the state. An inspector from the Division of Hotels and Restaurants went in and ordered an emergency closure after discovering 24 violations, three considered high priority.
Among the issues were a dumpster overflowing with garbage, grease under the cooking equipment, high grass and weeds surrounding the building, a hole in the ceiling and shelves soiled with food debris.
The inspector also confirmed roach activity with 88 live roaches found near front display cooler, under the drink prep counter, inside the reach in freezer, running across the food prep table, near the pot and pan storage area inside the toaster oven, under the cutting board, and even one inside the ice machine.
"I'm a vegetarian, roaches are not part of my diet," said a disgusted Hines.
So Wednesday we stopped in to see if the issues pointed out by the state had been corrected.
"After that we do a very deep clean, inside and out. Everything is very nice and clean now," said manager Yang Wai. "It's very important for us because we are vegan. We want people to have healthy food. Everything is good for the body."
But when it came to allowing our camera into the kitchen?
"No... everything is fixed," said Wai. "That area is private."
It's hard to say if things really are cleaned up because we found a history of problems on inspection after inspection dating back to 2011, with violations on things like roach and rodent activity, temperature violations, employees not properly washing hands, no soap at the employee hand sinks, and even a sign directing guests to throw used toilet paper in trash can instead of flushing it down the toilet.
"That's disgusting!" shouted Taisha Williams when we told her about the toilet paper. "That's a very huge problem, because the feces is going to turn into maggots, and it's going to be real stinky, and funky up in there."
As for Hines, he won't be back.
"It bothers me because I know it can get me sick."
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