BenchWarmers Tavern & Grill CEO arrested; fate of planned Wichita sites is unclear

WICHITA — In June, a BenchWarmers Tavern & Grill spokeswoman told Have You Heard? that CEO Kevin Foote helps set the business apart because he’s an executive chef.

He’s setting BenchWarmers apart for a new reason now.

According to newspapers in Colorado, where the chain is based, Foote was arrested last week on suspicion of a parole violation.

BenchWarmers signed a lease for the former Highlands Gastropub and Cardroom at 3731 N. Rock Road and had at least one more site planned for Wichita.

The Boulder Daily Camera quoted a Colorado Department of Corrections spokeswoman as saying Foote, 47, was arrested Wednesday for not telling his parole officers that he works around liquor and financial records.

The newspaper reports that for a 10-year period ending in 2003, Foote was arrested in Colorado about a dozen times on suspicions of various crimes, such as larceny, theft and fraud.

The Camera reports that Foote served time in prison after pleading guilty to being a habitual criminal and to a single count of felony larceny.

BenchWarmers has closed several Colorado sites.

“We haven’t been paid since June 30,” Mindy Bulmer, BenchWarmer’s regional manager, told the Camera. “Nobody has.”

The chain also has canceled plans to open 17 new sites.

It’s not clear if the future Wichita sites are some of the ones that won’t happen.

No one with BenchWarmers returned calls for comment.