A Texas lawsuit filed against Taco Bell alleges a Dallas store manager poured boiling water on customers, seriously injuring them, after they complained about an incomplete order.
In the lawsuit, filed July 13 in Dallas County 14th Judicial District Court, clients Brittany Davis and a minor, identified as CT, claim to have suffered permanent skin damage as a result of the June 17 incident at Dallas.
The 19-page lawsuit, filed by famed civil rights attorney Ben Crump and attorney Paul Grinke, alleges Taco Bell and the restaurant’s employees were grossly negligent, as well as negligent in hiring.
The two black women were locked in the dining room of the fast-food restaurant by the manager after trying to fix a problem with their $30 order twice incorrectly prepared during the drive-thru, according to a statement from Crump’s office. sent to USA TODAY.
The couple discussed their order with store employees for nearly ten minutes, “wondering why the employees couldn’t just go back and prepare the food they paid for,” the lawsuit alleges. “Employees refused to do so and became combative.”
The restaurant manager, the suit continues, had not participated in any of the conversations in the dining room, but came from behind the counter with a bucket of boiling water and poured it over the woman and the miner.
“We take the safety and well-being of team members and customers seriously,” Taco Bell said in a statement to USA TODAY. “Taco Bell is in contact with the franchise owner and operator of this restaurant regarding this matter.”
Taco Bell said it could not comment further on the ongoing litigation.
“Fumbling with the lock”
According to the suit, the minor was hit in the face and chest with boiling water that ran down her body, soaking her clothes.
Davis was also hit by water in the face and chest. She and the minor, “screaming, tried to run away from the Taco Bell,” but the manager locked them inside, according to the lawsuit.
As the pair fumbled with the lock, the combination continued, the manager returned with a second bucket of boiling water, but the pair managed to escape without being hit by the water a second time.
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They then ran to their car where family members were waiting for them, the suit says. “As this family was leaving the parking lot, a Taco Bell employee came out the front door laughing, clapping and mocking the family,” the lawsuit states.
While on the way to the hospital, the chase continues, Davis began to suffer a seizure. After reaching the hospital, Davis was airlifted by medical helicopter to a local burn intensive care unit. The minor was transported overland to another hospital, the lawsuit continues.
“Our hearts break for these two victims whose lives were forever changed because of the horrific and damaging actions of the Taco Bell manager and the larger entities that failed to (protect them),” reads a statement. statement from Crump’s office.
The lawsuit – seeking a jury trial, court costs, attorneys’ fees and $1 million in damages – names Parent company of Taco Bell Yum! Brands, Taco Bell Corp., Taco Bell of America, Taco Bell #22872, North Texas BELLS, and two unidentified employees as defendants.
Natalie Neysa Alund covers trending news for USA TODAY. Contact her at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter @nataliealund.