8 of the strangest lawsuits making headlines

X-rated ice cream, a racist Hooter's receipt and six more strange lawsuits in the news

Frightful Fall

An Illinois girl who went to an amusement park looking for a Halloween scare got more than she bargained for, according to a lawsuit filed by her father. Marian Pieczonka says that his daughter Natalie was attending last year’s Fright Fest event at Six Flags Great America in Gurnee, Ill. when a costumed park employee jumped out of a portable toilet and shot the young girl with a squirt gun.

Pinching Pennies

They say a penny saved is a penny earned, but retailer Forever 21 has taken that adage too far, according to one Florida lawyer. Carolyn Kellman alleges that she bought a pair of shorts for $14.46 on May 12. But when she subsequently returned the shorts, the clothing store purportedly refunded her only $14.45. In another instance, Kellman says, she bought a skirt for $11.75, but only received $11.56 when she returned it.

Salty Signage

At first glance, Joe Hirsch’s plan seemed unobjectionable. The Dunwoody, Ga. man simply wanted to participate in the city’s “Adopt-A-Spot” program, in which groups clean up sections of roadway, and are rewarded with a roadside sign proclaiming their name. The catch? Hirsch’s group is entitled: “Dunwoody’s Public Works Director Michael Smith is a $#%@”

Sinful Snacks

A pornographic film company has abandoned its efforts to spice up one of America’s sweet treats.  Vermont-based ice cream makers Ben & Jerry’s sued Rodax Distributors and Caballero Video, claiming that the filmmakers’ series “Ben & Cherries” featured titles that infringed on the ice cream maker’s trademarked ice cream names.

Fire Fiasco

Matthew Rapp was a fire suppression repairman, but he wasn’t prepared to be set on fire himself. The incident occurred in October 2010, when Rapp was reportedly called to the East China Inn in Batavia, Ill. to fix the restaurant’s fuses. According to Rapp’s lawsuit, he was working on top of a stove when an employee turned on a nearby wok, setting him alight. Rapp’s attorney says the resulting grease burns caused the 25-year-old to miss 21 weeks of work.

Detached Digit

It’s one thing to wake up with a hangover after a night on the town. It’s another to lose a finger during a night of partying. Robert Dyer, a Washington D.C. lawyer, says the trouble began when he attempted to pay his tab at the Georgetown bar Smith Point, and found that he was $18 short of the bar’s $30 minimum for credit card charges. Bartenders reportedly served the inebriated Dyer three vodka shots mixed with Red Bull to make up the difference, although his lawsuit contends that they “should have known that [he] was not in a position…to continue to consume alcohol.”  

Photo by Silvio Tanaka

Racist Restaurant

Lax Laborers

Alanna Byrne

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