MOUNT HOLLY, N.C. — A North Carolina man has filed as federal lawsuit against Hardee's, alleging the fast-food restaurant deprived him of his civil rights last year by not putting enough Hash Rounds on his plate.
Tommy Martin, of Mount Holly, alleges his skin color led him to be served fewer of the potato-based breakfast side item, the Fayetteville Observer reported. Martin, who is black, filed the lawsuit, which was handwritten, Friday at the U.S. District Court in Charlotte, the.newspaper reported. Martin alleges the incident violated the 14th Amendment, which deals with civil rights.
A photograph of the meal on the Hardee's website shows about a dozen hash rounds on the plate.
Martin, 58, said the incident occurred May 30, 2018, at a Hardee's in Belmont.
According to the lawsuit, the cashier at the Hardee's tried to correct the issue, but a manager stepped in and told Martin "that's what you get," the Observer reported.
Martin alleges in the lawsuit the incident made him feel stupid and gave him cibophobia, a fear of food.
“Eating in public is a no-no,” Martin alleges in the lawsuit.
While Martin said he was given a refund by a Hardee's manager, he wants a jury to decide the case, the Observer reported.
“Got home with tear in mine (sic) eye,” the lawsuit said. “I have got to do something.”
Representatives from Hardee's in Belmont were not available for comment, the Observer reported.
A spokesman at the Hardee's corporate office released a statement to HuffPost saying it takes the allegations seriously but is declining to comment since the lawsuit is against an independently owned and operated franchise:
"Hardee's is aware of the lawsuit filed this week which alleges that a guest's civil rights were violated while visiting one of our independently owned and operated franchised locations over a year ago," the spokesman told HuffPost. "As a company we take these allegations seriously, however, as this lawsuit is pending against a franchisee, we have no additional comment on the matter at this time."
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