Casper firm files second lawsuit against Golden Corral

2013-02-12T06:00:00Z 2013-05-07T19:07:05Z Casper firm files second lawsuit against Golden CorralBy MEGAN CASSIDY Star-Tribune staff writer Casper Star-Tribune Online

Four days after filing a class action lawsuit against Golden Corral, Ochs Law Firm filed a second complaint against the buffet-style restaurant.

While Friday’s suit seeks reimbursement for all who ate at the east Casper restaurant during a specified time, the new lawsuits are individualized for those who suffered bodily harm, Casper attorney Jason Ochs said in an emailed statement.

Officials from Golden Corral say they took immediate action to correct the problem and prevent future illnesses.

Monday’s complaint names four Natrona County residents as plaintiffs, all of whom patronized the restaurant late last year and claim they subsequently suffered “bodily injuries, mental and physical pain and suffering and economic loss.”

The Wyoming Department of Health said there have been more than 300 reported cases of norovirus among the restaurant’s customers. Officials believe several more cases were unreported. The department estimated about 7,000 individuals ate at Golden Corral between Nov. 17 and Dec. 19.

Representatives from the North Carolina-based Golden Corral Corporation said they had not yet been served the lawsuit and wouldn’t comment on pending litigation.

The latest suit lists nine allegations against the restaurant for its alleged responsibility in the outbreak.

Allegations include “vomitus accidents” in the dining area and more than 20 employees working while displaying gastrointestinal symptoms. The accusations are based on the Department of Health’s findings.

The complaint additionally contends the company was negligent in preventing the outbreak.

David Giesen, president of Golden DBL Inc. and owner of the Casper franchise, said the company worked closely with the Casper-Natrona Health Department to assist in its investigation and took immediate action.

“We appreciate the work that went into the final report issued by the Wyoming Department of Health regarding the local outbreak of norovirus that occurred last year,” he said in an emailed statement. “Norovirus is not a foodborne illness, and we know that it is easily transmitted by contact.”

The Centers for Disease Control says norovirus is the most common cause of foodborne-disease outbreaks in the U.S.

Giesen said the company continues to promote cleanliness and rigorously follows the health department’s recommendations.

“The health department’s report notes that the inspections conducted by the county on Dec. 31, after the outbreak in the community subsided, gave Golden Corral high marks,” he said. “We are grateful for the Casper community’s continued support and patronage. The health and well-being of our guests and employees remain our top priorities. “

The lawsuit did not request a specific monetary amount in damages, but claims a judgment against the defendants would result in an amount “well in excess” of $75,000.

Ochs said the exact amount will depend on “the extent of what the company knew or didn’t know, and what they chose to tell patrons or not tell them.”

Ochs said more plaintiffs could emerge.

“We intend to represent all legitimate cases where a plaintiff has been genuinely harmed by the actions of the restaurant,” he said.

Reach crime reporter Megan Cassidy at 307-266-0534 or Follow her on Twitter @meganrcassidy.

Copyright 2015 Casper Star-Tribune Online. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

(7) Comments

  1. carlover
    Report Abuse
    carlover - February 14, 2013 3:43 pm
    ironic, meaning you can eat at a eatery, and get sick, and get to file a lawsuit for over 75k in danages, and most likey have a jury trial. but if your a resident and hurt no one but your cited as though your a crimnal, you cant have a jury trail, even though the fines will be in the millions if you lose? lady justice is nopt just blind, she had her eyes jabed out with a fork.
  2. IdrahaJe
    Report Abuse
    IdrahaJe - February 12, 2013 4:19 pm
    There is a song by the Eagles that seems to fit: Get over it.
  3. Micky
    Report Abuse
    Micky - February 12, 2013 8:27 am
    The only people that really have a right to sue are those who were seriously sick and in the hospital for a day or two because of it. That never happened. How many times have we heard "I was in the er last night, because I ate at such and such a place and got food poisoning." The lawyers are going to set a precedence that will give them more jobs in the long run. In this sue crazy society, it will eventually close down some places, if they win, and ruin employee jobs if we can't stop them from every little lawsuit. People are still getting the norovirus without eating at a restaurant. What will the lawyers do for them?
  4. N3crix
    Report Abuse
    N3crix - February 12, 2013 7:56 am
    The night everyone got sick, men in black suits knocked on my door. I answered it and was subjected to a black bag put over my head as I was rushed out to a white van in the street. Shortly after my family was ushered into the van as well, all the while hearing "Youre gonna eat Golden Corral tonight, and youre going to like it."

    I ate GC buffet that night because I was forced too, not because I choose to eat there. Just like if I stick a fork in an outlet, I have the possibility of getting shocked. Im not suing the form maker or the power company.

    Litigious jerks.

  5. Sassy
    Report Abuse
    Sassy - February 12, 2013 6:44 am
    I ate at GC two years ago, can I add my name to the list ?
  6. TBA
    Report Abuse
    TBA - February 12, 2013 6:38 am
    I doubt if it will keep the hog trough from being visited.Given the size of people anymore,it would appear they have been to these pig out joints quite frequently.
  7. Jeffrey
    Report Abuse
    Jeffrey - February 12, 2013 6:23 am
    I say "get 'em."
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