SAN LEANDRO -- A 26-year-old man was arrested Sunday night after allegedly holding employees and patrons at knifepoint inside a San Leandro restaurant, authorities said.

Drunk and upset his cell phone was stolen, Jose Rutilio Enrique pulled out a knife and threatened those inside La Pinata Restaurant, located at 2699 Merced Street, at about 11:20 p.m., police said.

Diners and employees fought back, wrestling the San Leandro man to the floor, taking the knife and holding him until police officers arrived.

Before he was arrested on suspicion of brandishing a weapon, Enrique added assault on a police officer and resisting arrest to his jail booking sheet for fighting with officers and biting one in the leg, police said.

In a statement, Lt. Richard DeCosta praised the swift action of employees and patrons.

"This incident could have escalated and become much more violent had these employees and patrons not stepped in and responded the way they did," DeCosta said.

David DeBolt covers breaking news. Follow him at Twitter.com/daviddebolt.



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