Customer sues Pizza Hut over alleged racial slur on receipt

Sept. 9, 2003

GREENVILLE, S.C. -- A Greenville County man has filed a $2 million lawsuit against the corporate parent of Pizza Hut, claiming a restaurant employee typed a racial expletive on his receipt.

According to The Greenville News, on Aug 18, plaintiff David Benson filed the suit against Louisville, Ky.-based Yum! Brands, Inc., and an unidentified employee of the store.

Included in the lawsuit is a copy of a receipt dated March 31, in which the word "name" is followed by a typed racial epithet.

Benson's attorney, Theo W. Mitchell, called it "one of the most shocking things I've seen in a long time."

In the suit, Benson alleged he went to the Pizza Hut to pick up a pizza and cheese sticks, paid for the items and left without incident. Benson's wife reportedly saw the receipt when he got home.

Yum and Pizza Hut representatives told the newspaper they could not comment on pending litigation.

"We are very, very clear on how we work together and how we treat people," said Pizza Hut spokesperson Patty Sullivan. "We take accusations like this very seriously and investigate thoroughly and then take appropriate action."

Benson's suit asks for $1 million in actual damages for defamation of character and another $1 million for intentional infliction of emotional distress/outrage.

"We're interested in knowing who put it in, why it was put in and what message if any it was to convey," Mitchell said.

Topics: Operations Management , Pizza Hut

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