PHILADELPHIA - A lawsuit filed by a woman who claimed she found broken glass in
her food at the Ruby Tuesday restaurant in the Springfield Mall has quickly come to an
The case, which was previously reported on by the Pennsylvania Record, involved Ashivia Singletary of Philadelphia and was filed
on Feb. 1, 2017, in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas.
Evan Dyer, an attorney with Louis B. Himmelstein
& Associates in Philadelphia, represented Singletary in the now-settled case against
“That case settled maybe a week ago,” Dyer told the Penn Record during a telephone interview. “It settled for an undisclosed amount.”
In the original filing, the plaintiff claimed that “as she
was sitting and eating, Singletary came in contact with the aforesaid
dangerous food, unclean food, broken glass, foreign object in the food,
irregularity, defect and/or other dangerous condition, causing Singletary, to chew
on and/or swallow and/or consume the broken glass and/or foreign object causing
plaintiff to sustain serious, painful and permanent injuries which required
medical treatment and care.”
The lawsuit relied on an implied warranty between restaurant
patrons and establishments that exists in all states. Essentially, the law
holds restaurants liable for the food they serve and any foreign or
dangerous objects that may be found in that food, unless it’s expected by the
patron. Diners have found foreign objects in restaurants' food in various cases, ranging from broken glass to pieces of metal, or
even, in one case involving a fast food chain, human flesh.
Although the amount of the settlement won't be disclosed, the
original suit requested an award in excess of $50,000 for Singletary, citing
negligence, strict liability, breach of warranty, breach of implied warranty
and breach of express warranty. According to the original complaint, Singletary allegedly suffered significant harm including broken and cracked teeth, mouth damage and
other orthopedic and psychological injuries during the incident.
Cases where individuals file suit against restaurants
after finding foreign objects in their food aren’t necessarily outside the
norm, but they aren’t the most common personal injury claims.
“It’s not the most common type of case at all,” Dyer said. “We
don’t get [cases like Singletary’s] that much, but under no circumstances is it the
only one we’ve had.” Dyer declined to comment on the details of the
settlement and whether Ruby Tuesday admitted any wrongdoing.
“I’m not going to say one way or the other particularly
about this case,” Dyer said.
“I’m just going to say in general that 99.99 percent of these releases don’t
have an admission of liability.”
The settlement in cases such as Singletary’s are
complicated and involve many factors, according to Dyer.
“Something tells me that a lot of factors went into [Ruby
Tuesday’s decision to settle], but I can’t be more specific than that,” he said.