back to article US cops called to McDonalds menu cock-up

A Florida woman has earned herself an appearance before the beak on a misuse of 911 rap after calling cops three times to demand they rush to a McDonald's outlet and satisfy her lust for Chicken McNuggets. According to the Stuart News, 27-year-old Latreasa L Goodman, of Fort Pierce, ordered and paid for a delicious ten-piece …

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  1. Gianni Straniero
    Go

    Neologism

    POIDH

    Which now stands for "Playmobil, or it didn't happen"

  2. Anonymous Coward
    IT Angle

    Err..

    So what, pray tell, is the IT angle on this one?

  3. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: Err..

    IT workers eat junk food. What's the matter with you people?

  4. Florence
    Unhappy

    Please tell me these people aren't serious

    Poll alongside the original article:

    Would you have called 911 if a fast food place was out of what your ordered and wouldn't refund your money?

    Yes. 24% 615 votes

    No. 73% 1865 votes

    No opinion. 2% 69 votes

    2549 total votes

  5. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge
    Flame

    She looks the type.

    Yes indee-dee!!! Trashy McDonalds eating scum.

  6. Disco-Legend-Zeke
    Paris Hilton

    The woman had clearly been robbed.

    It was the second and third call that got her in trouble.

    She would have been well advised to retain a lawyer instead fo settling. Causing her to be arrested for complaining seems to be standard american procedure, its one wayt to lower the number of reported crimes.

    Paris cause its her birthday

  7. Edwin
    Happy

    The BK story was better

    http://www.snopes.com/crime/cops/burger.asp

  8. Tim
    Linux

    Sounds like fraud to me.

    If a company offers a product and accepts payment for said product, and then refuses hand over aforementioned product, one is entitled to a refund of the purchase price. Refusal to relinquish said monies, despite claiming a sale to be final, would then constitute fraud, under the premise that money was obtained with no intention to fulfil the agreed contract.

    At least that is my understanding of fraud law. Now if it was in Blighty, the offending 10peice would have been substituted for a filet-o-fish followed by a 2 hour wait, which would still be shorter than the time it would take for the rozzers to show up!

    Penguin as its the closest to a chicken!

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Sarah

    IT workers eat junk food, but McDonalds isn't junk food, it's worse.

  10. Chris Miller
    Coat

    I must protest in the strongest possible terms

    Your article describes McNuggets as 'poultry-based nourishment'. Wrong on both counts, I fancy.

  11. Geoff May

    Is it just me ...

    ... or do some people have a serious problem in understanding the concept of "Odds & Sods"?

  12. Paul Johnston
    Happy

    @Florence

    Now it's

    Yes. 24% 653 votes

    No. 72% 1924 votes

    Lets get that yes vote higher

  13. Matt Eagles

    Call the cops....

    To be fair if McDonalds had just taken my money, not given me any food and then refused to give me my money back I'd feel like I'd been robbed as well. Although isn't traditional American way with this sort of dispute was to sue for emotional distress, rather than call the police out?

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The leader of the free world

    Americans are really a bunch of morons.

    I mean if you are into eating McRubbish (I'll admit to doing so before when lost somewhere and desparately hungry) then I'd say she was getting quite a good deal, a ;larger portion for the same money but whatever she needs to be slung in jail for wasting police time.

    Never mind, I'm sure ahe's well on her way to achieving her ambition of becoming a McFatty.

  15. Liam

    hmmm

    to be fair as said if you order something, they advertise but cannot provide you are entitled to a cash refund.

    who cares about the bloody IT angle? jesus. some of you lot are such geeks. dont we all just come here to toss off some work time?

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Thank goodness this doesn't happen in Blighty

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/oxfordshire/7819213.stm

    ..."one caller even dialled 999 to complain that he had been waiting too long for his meal in a restaurant"

  17. michael

    sorry but I call error

    "only to be told there weren't any pieces of poultry-based nourishment left"

    it has been proven that mc food has no nourishment in it whatsoever

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    its her

    err, isnt that Charlie from Big Brother?

  19. Code Monkey

    McNuggets

    "[McNuggets] are dunked in barbecue or hot mustard sauce."

    The best place to dunk them is the bin!

  20. Paul C. Hartley
    Flame

    Tough Call...

    This is a tough call.

    I maybe wouldnt call the police in such a situation. I would probably refuse to leave the counter and make it clear that the cashier wasn't serving anyone else behind me until the situation had been resolved to my satisfaction. If the cashier didn't like it then I would let McDonalds call the police. Resolving this should not have been difficult.

    Technically if the value of the alternative is less than the order then she should be entitled to a refund of the difference. If the alternative is unsuitable then she should be entitled to a refund on the product that can not be provided or allowed to cancel.

    Then again here in the UK we have statutory rights and consumer law that guarentees this.

    The flame icon because I would always get a flame grilled BK over anything on the McBollox menu any day of the week.

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Coat

    @The woman had clearly been robbed

    Technically not robbery, but theft since there was no force or threat of force. She wasn't arrested for complaining, but for abusing the emergency services number. Even the 1st call to 911 should have gotten her arrested. Absolutely reasonable to call the cops for theft, but *not* the emergency services number.

    Mine's the one with the legal dictionary in the pocket, thanks.

  22. Nic Brough
    Coat

    @Sarah Bee - Wednesday 4th March 2009 15:23 GMT

    >IT workers eat junk food

    Hey! Pizza isn't junk food - it's got fruit (tomato) AND veg (jalapeno) on it!

    Mine's the one with a pizza delivery menu and a US "refund acquisition utility" in the pocket, as suggested in the bootnote...

  23. Tim Porter

    Better link

    http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2009/0303091mcnugget1.html

    Not only is there her mugshot, but there's a copy of the police report and you can even listen to her phone calls.

  24. P.Nutt
    Thumb Up

    Dang she was lucky on 2 counts....

    As she avoided having to eat at MickyD's and didnt get a tasering from the local law enforcement officers when they turned up. Lucky break or what.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Why was she arrested?

    So let me get this straight.

    The officer DIDN'T have enough time to deal with McDonalds bait and switch. But DID have enough time to arrest her for calling the police?

    If they didn't want to send officers, then why did they tell her an officer was on the way?

    McDonalds has admitted their mistake, so it's clear they are in the wrong. So why did the officer fail to realize that? Did he even attempt to get both sides of the story?

    I'm sorry, but I'm with her on this, it's no different that if a man on the street pulled a bait and switch scam. She should have been entitled to get her money back and having been told an officer was on the way the first time, it's reasonable for her to call 2 more times to find out where the officer is. I see it was a black woman, was it a white officer?

  26. Samson Chan
    Stop

    @ Sarah Bee

    Calling McD's junk food is a bit rich, ins't it? More like toxic waste!

  27. markthebrewer

    Entirely Predicable Poll

    It's good to see that 689 (24%) other people would behave in exactly the same way to this travesty of culinary justice.

  28. Code Monkey

    @markthebrewer

    As this story's been linked from El Reg you can assume that some of those 689 (24%) are (rightly) taking the piss

  29. Anonymous John
    Unhappy

    Re Re: Err..

    You've been moderating for a while now. About time they let you write some articles again.

  30. Christopher E. Stith
    Alert

    911 is an EMERGENCY number, not a general police number

    In the US, 911 is a number for emergency services (police, fire, ambulance, wilderness rescue, etc) in case of an actual emergency. Being shorted $4 is not a life or death matter. She should have called a non-emergency number for her local police department. She wasn't arrested for contacting the police. She was arrested for misusing the emergency contact system for a non-emergency situation. There is a great deal of difference between settling a theft or fraud dispute and someone's life being in imminent danger.

  31. Dennis
    Unhappy

    Re: She looks the type

    "Trashy McDonalds eating scum"

    I have to disagree. Although it's only a head shot I'd guess she is 200 pounds too light to meet that description.

  32. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: Re Re: Err..

    Nah, there hasn't been much Tasmanian devil news lately.

  33. Tim Schomer
    Coat

    @Why was she arrested?

    Probably because the local plod eat in there and probably get a discount for this exact reason.

    ... Ouch, OK, OK, I'm Going, Ouch

  34. Cameron Colley

    Tough call...

    ON one hand it does seem like abuse of the emergency service number, on the other how else are you supposed to report theft?

    @Florence et al: How do you suggest she should have got her money back? Or do you think that McDonalds should be allowed to steal from people?

    The police are paid, by the tax payer, to uphold the law -- that includes enforcing laws against confidence tricks.

  35. Anonymous Coward
    Coat

    Please tell me...

    she got tasered.

    Please!

    I can see it now.

    Customer> They won't give me my McNuggets!!!!!!!!!!

    Cop> I'll give you some thing.

    Customer> Oh Goodie.

    Cop> Tzzzzzzzzzzt

    Cop> Regular or extra crispy?

    Cop> Tzzzzzzzzzzt; TZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzrrrrrrrrt.

    Cop> Damn, the batteries are flat.

  36. Stevie Silver badge

    Bah and Double Bah

    If it was staffed by the normal level of expertise and businesslike managers these places can have, in all likelyhood no-one knew how to override the point-of-sale software and open the til without selling something else.

    And before we get any more high and mighty UK residents mouthing off about McDonalds, I should like to point out that awful as US fast food can be, the British had a far more potent weapon in the disgusting food, filthy conditions and rude staff deployed against diners at your typical Fortes motorway service station *years* before McDonalds penetrated (ooer) the UK market.

    As an Ex-pat who travelled the M6 and M1 on a regular basis for years, I speak from experience here. When coupled with the ultimate in highway landscaping first prize has to go to Newport Pagnel. Lousy food, generally cold and congealed, served in conditions that make lunch in a coal bunker look palatial by comparison by staff whose attitude ranged from British Rail Ticket Seller to Attila the Hun, all in the heady ambience of the five-years-and-STILL-not-finished Contra Flow.

    We could also discuss the "food" served up in your average British Rail terminus, but I'm going to eat in an hour or so so we won't.

    I'll take McDonalds over those examples of home-grown hell any day.

  37. pctechxp

    @Edwin

    Yes was very amusing.

    The current BK ads here in Blighty are quite amusing

    http://www.visit4info.com/advert/Dive-King-Deals-from-Burger-King-Burger-King/69242

    You'll feel like you robbed us

  38. Matt Martin

    @@Sarah Bee - Wednesday 4th March 2009 15:23 GMT

    No no no - the humble jalapeno is clearly a fruit as well.

    In fact if you had pineapple on there as well it'd by 3 of your 5 a day.

  39. DT

    which part of the bird....

    @Paul C. Hartley

    You'd rather have a BK because Micky D's is rubbish... lol @ junk food snobbery; I'm lovin' it! That's like the Trainspotting scene with Begbie; pint in one hand, fag in the other saying "there's no way I'd fill my veins with that sh*te"

    @Nic Brough

    Since when are peppers vegetables?

    @All

    So what is the non-emergency police number? Does anyone know it?

  40. David Wilkinson
    Unhappy

    People are idiots.

    A large percentage of calls to 911 are not emergencies. A call like this really doesn't put much of a drain on police resources. In a situation like this they will show up no faster than if she called the non-emergency number.

    The real issue is that she tied up an emergency dispatcher. They don't just answer phones, they also provide emergency first aid instructions. When someone has a child who stopped breathing the last thing you want if for them to be on hold because its a busy night and some idiot is unhappy with their fast food order.

    Part of the problem is that there is no single nation wide non-emergency number. Most of the time people are not being stupid so much as too lazy to look up the proper number, or too cheap to pay for directory assistance.

  41. Kevin Gurney
    IT Angle

    IT Angle

    If you don't want people questioning the IT angle, get rid of the icon !

  42. Anonymous Coward
    Flame

    So that she could sue them of course!

    How on earth was she meant to sue them, if they didn't give her Chicken McNuggets with the complimentary fried chicken's head?

    http://salmonella.co.uk/chicken-mcnugget.jpg

  43. The Fuzzy Wotnot
    Thumb Up

    Stupid! Stupid! Stupid!

    Someone that stupid deserves to be put in some secure hospital somewhere, simply for the benefit of everyone else's sanity!

  44. J
    Paris Hilton

    @She looks the type.

    "Yes indee-dee!!! Trashy McDonalds eating scum."

    Weird, all I can see in the picture is her face, which looks perfectly normal -- by the way, what is the look of "trashy whatever eating scum"?

    Or are you saying that just because she is black? I can detect no other commonly displayed reason for prejudice (clothing, fatness, etc.?) in the picture, so I assume it's just racism.

  45. The Badger
    Flame

    Re: Tough call...

    "ON one hand it does seem like abuse of the emergency service number, on the other how else are you supposed to report theft?"

    Hint: it's an emergency number. The key word here is *emergency*.

    Report theft? Is the cashier robbing everyone at gunpoint? Are people's lives in danger? Nope. Then report it via the other police channels.

  46. Anonymous Coward
    Boffin

    Call the local police if you must, but not 911

    In the U.S., a distinction should be made between ordinary police phone lines (which put you in touch directly with the local police department) and the 911 service (which essentially connects you to a dispatcher for ALL local emergency services, including police, fire, medical, etc., by using one phone number regardless of your location). Calls should be placed to 911 only in cases of dire emergency; otherwise, you can get in trouble for abusing the service. That seems perfectly reasonable to me.

    I feel that Ms. Goodman was entitled to a refund, and I agree that she had good reason to be upset when the cashier refused to return her money. But calling 911 was not the appropriate course of action. Other options were available. For example, calling the local police department through their own local phone number would not have been an abuse of emergency services. However, it's questionable whether a police officer would have been dispatched to the scene of the, er, crime. It was more of a civil matter than a criminal matter--another distinction that is made in American jurisprudence. Surely those of you in the UK have heard of tort law, as distinguished from criminal law?

    Yet another option would be to call McDonald's corporate headquarters, at the district, regional, or national level. I haven't been to a McDonald's "restaurant" (if you can call it that) in a very long time, but I'm aware that other fast food restaurants have a toll-free (1-800) number on display next to their cash registers that you can call if you are dissatisfied with the service you receive. Savvy consumers are aware that similar options are available in other industries as well. For example, if you do not receive satisfactory service at a local post office, a call to the USPS Consumer Affairs Department can yield swift and effective results. It's just a matter of going up the chain of command until you reach someone who can set the rest of them straight. If the phone number is not readily available, directory assistance and the operator are always available.

  47. Matt

    Civil not criminal...

    >The officer DIDN'T have enough time to deal with McDonalds bait and switch. But DID have

    >enough time to arrest her for calling the police?

    Her offense was criminal.

    McDonald's offense was civil and therefore the police had no jurisdiction. It wasn't theft. McDonalds had a verbal contract they made in good faith by failed to deliver on, thus civil.

    Now often the police will try to mediate disputes that are civil, but they won't waste too much time on before telling the parties it's a civil offense and if they can't get along, go sue each other. Have a nice day.

  48. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @911 is an EMERGENCY number

    "In the US, 911 is a number for emergency services (police, fire, ambulance, wilderness rescue, etc) in case of an actual emergency. Being shorted $4 is not a life or death matter."

    911 is not only for life and death matters. The dispatcher told her an officer was on the way, so the dispatcher thought it was worth forwarding even if the officers didn't want to respond to it. Should the dispatcher be arrested too?

    "She should have called a non-emergency number for her local police department. She wasn't arrested for contacting the police. She was arrested for misusing the emergency contact system for a non-emergency situation. There is a great deal of difference between settling a theft or fraud dispute and someone's life being in imminent danger."

    She's not a lawyer, and saying an officer is on the way confirms to her that she is right to call 911. If the dispatcher thought she should call the local police for that, why didn't she forward her to the local police, or tell her the number or at the very least say so?

    As to whether this is a police matter, well if it wasn't Micky D's but a scam artist on the street that pulled a bait and switch would you expect her to call 911? Micky D's are not special you know, they don't have special corporate rights.

    To me if the police had time to arrest her for calling 911, they had enough to deal with this matter. Getting all high and mighty about which crimes they will and won't pursue just smacks of inflated self egos getting in the way of the job.

  49. jake Silver badge

    @Sarah & IT angle

    "IT workers eat junk food."

    Not this IT worker. Eating healthy is cheaper & easier, when you know how.

    "What's the matter with you people?"

    That would bee my question ... Why do supposedly intelligent IT folks refuse to learn how to cook? It's not exactly rocket science, after all ... Humans have been cooking longer than pr0n has existed!

    IT angle? She used a cell phone to call the emergency services network. Duh!

  50. James O'Brien
    Coat

    @Author

    "To be fair, if the poor woman had paid for the McNuggets, then McDonalds should have stumped the dish or given her the money back. Calling the cops is a bit excessive, though. She could have responded in the traditional local manner by simply shooting the cashier and taking her cash back."

    ROFL too true too true

    @Geoff May

    Whats an Odd and Sod? :P

    /Just hand me the coat with the Glock in it I need to get a refund.

  51. Kevin

    Wow another

    think it was a week or so ago I heard the 911 call of a guy, I think it was in Florida also, who was upset Burger King ran out of lemonade and wanted the drive thru attendant arrested.

  52. James Woods

    i hope she gets off

    Yeah abusing 9/11 isn't fun but come on. Nobody knows this ladies entire situation. Perhaps she just lost her job, you know how good this food is, all she probably wanted was her nuggets. I still can't figure out if they were out of nuggets all together or just that size but in either way if she ordered something, they didn't have it and they refused to refund her i'd be irate too.

    I haven't been to a McDonalds since a snotty pimple faced kid at the window made a remark to me one time. His scrawny as* is lucky I didn't go inside and show him what it's like, instead I just never went back to Mcdonalds. That's been about 4 years now.

    I can remember as a child going to fast food places and being told they didn't have what I wanted, was always upsetting. You really would have to tell me how this womans abuse of the 9/11 system fits into the other 9/11 calls they get on a daily basis. How many other 9/11 calls do they get where officers are dispatched to do nothing. Im sure theres alot of nonsense calls that just aren't seen as nonsense since it doesn't involve chicken nuggets.

  53. Brian Whittle

    Yes No Yes

    Yes she should have got here refund

    No . McDonald's chicken McNuggets can't be classed as food

    Yes she is an idiot for ringing 911

  54. Hud Dunlap
    Flame

    @Christopher E. Stith

    911 is not always an emergency only number depending on where you live. When my car was broken into (Dallas, Tx). I was told to call 911 to get an incident report number for my insurance claim. Apt security had already notified the police since five other cars were broken into at the same time.

  55. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Civil vs Criminal

    "McDonald's offense was civil and therefore the police had no jurisdiction. It wasn't theft. McDonalds had a verbal contract they made in good faith by failed to deliver on, thus civil."

    She called 911 in good faith, the dispatcher did not inform her it was civil matter and out of the jurisdiction of the rozzers. So why should people be locked up for calling 911 in good faith?

    As to whether it's a civil matter, if she had eaten at a restaurant and failed to pay they would call the police. It would not be a civil breach of a verbal contract and the officer would not arrest the restaurant owner for making the call. It is reasonable for her to expect to be treated with equal respect.

    I bet there are no end of ways the officer could have dealt with this that were more professional than his chosen route.

  56. Owen
    Heart

    Cops do come to McDonalds in Australia

    Policemen in Oz get a discount at McDonalds. They even get a free side order from their mates sometimes . . .

    http://www.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/story/0,22049,24913422-5001021,00.html

  57. Anonymous Coward
    Happy

    I don't think you folks understand

    How distastrous a fast food emergency is - I took 4 under 5s to McDonalds to discover they were fresh outa Mcnuggets. Oh, woe. Michael Douglas in Falling Down times 4, and without the good humour. And surely the IT angle is that McDonalds is to food as Microsoft is to operating systems?

  58. Neoc

    Moron

    Calling the Police? Yes.

    Calling 911/999/000? Moron.

    And as for the "do you know the number" question: no, I do not. But I (and presumably Ms trailer-trash) have a mobile, with directory assist. One quick call (in my case) and they can look up what I require, send me the details via SMS to integrate into my contacts, and patch me through immediately. And no, I'm not on a special "platinum service" contract.

    So no, there was no reason for this idiot to call 911 - the calling of which for non-emergencies (in America at least) is a Federal offence.

  59. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    fair enough

    McDs were exhibiting criminal behaviour, take them in.

    What other fucking way is there to report crime by multinational corporations? Let's face it the old bill won't take a blind bit of notice of abusive behaviour otherwise than by dialling 999 and probably not even then.

  60. R Callan
    Flame

    911 is

    an abuse of the emergency number. I know of at least three other emergency numbers in the world, but due to the 'merkin propaganda machine to my knowledge 2 of them have had to install a divergence for 911 to the correct number! If I was to call 000, 111, 999 or any other in the states would it be diverted, or would that be an abuse of the emergency call system?

    The oldest system is (according to Wikipedia) 999. 911 is obviously an unauthourised derivative under copyright and should be banned, or at least have to pay punitive damages of $150,00 per call.

  61. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Neoc

    "Federal offence" reminds of E Clapton for some reason - soz think I'm losing it.

  62. Anonymous Coward
    Unhappy

    @Sarah

    Awwww, poor tasmanian devils and their disease. Wonder if that fence will do any good.

  63. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Internet Lawyering

    If you don't know the law, it's probably best to refrain from offering your theories.

    McDonalds didn't commit fraud, nor did it commit theft. The matter is a civil matter, and the action that the woman would be able to sue under is breach of contract or unjust enrichment. She was wronged by the McDonalds, up until she decided to call 911.

  64. Eddy Ito Silver badge
    Happy

    Bovine excrement

    WTF, "all sales are final." The cashier is as big an idiot as Goodman, who should have just demanded to speak to a manager and refused to leave the counter. Even at DickeyMe's a sale is only complete after a full exchange of product for money. As the customer never received any merchandise, the sale was never completed and therefore it could not be final. If the managing McMonkey refuses to adequately resolve the situation, then escalation to public nuisance is warranted. I'd wager 90 seconds into a nice tantrum or scream thief a few times and things should start looking better.

    Oh, nuggets are technically 70% poultry. Granted it's mechanically separated chicken slurry but hey nobody tosses what's left after the boneless breasts, drumsticks and chicken wings are gone.

  65. Pierre Silver badge

    @ Sarah

    "IT workers eat junk food."

    It's not junkfood. Bacon is a vegetable.

  66. Moss Icely Spaceport
    Thumb Down

    Ye gods!

    "delicious ten-piece McNugget treat"

    - Delicious?

    - Treat?

    No and no!

    We need a *barf* icon!

  67. jake Silver badge

    @Pierre

    "It's not junkfood. Bacon is a vegetable."

    Bacon in all it's forms[1] is a staple. When over-utilized, it's junkfood.

    [1] Except "watery bacon", which is a bastard child I never even knew existed, until the kind commenters here on ElReg enlightened me ... Thanks. Now I have yet ANOTHER food related thingie that you Brits have managed to cock up to look out for ...

  68. michael

    "toss off some work time?"

    I prefer to do that in privet and with more exotic web sites

    o you said ....never mind

  69. The Jase

    calling 118?

    "And as for the "do you know the number" question: no, I do not. But I (and presumably Ms trailer-trash) have a mobile, with directory assist. One quick call (in my case) and they can look up what I require, send me the details via SMS to integrate into my contacts, and patch me through immediately. And no, I'm not on a special "platinum service" contract."

    You would pay the ridiculous 118 toll charge? Screw directory enquiries, its too expensive.

    She handled it in a bad way, I would have asked for the manager, and if that didn't work, I would have taken the names down of the server, and owner, and asked for the details of their lawyer, and the Franchise holders details.

  70. Anonymous Coward
    Alert

    LOL. Reminds me of...

    Reminds me of the woman that called 911 because BK wouldn't give it "[her] way". BK had apparently put in an unwanted ingredient (onions or something like that). The women become so indignant as to waste tax payer money on something she could have fixed herself in 5 seconds.

    What McDonald's did was not criminal, but I'm of the opinion that they should have just given her a refund. Now, I do want to make some comments about what others have posted:

    "As to whether it's a civil matter, if she had eaten at a restaurant and failed to pay they would call the police. It would not be a civil breach of a verbal contract and the officer would not arrest the restaurant owner for making the call. It is reasonable for her to expect to be treated with equal respect."

    - Yes, they may have called the police but NOT 911. If she had tried to run out on the check then it would be criminal (i.e. theft). If she had intended to pay but informed the restaurant that she couldn't (e.g. forgot her wallet) then it would be civil and up to the restaurant to decide how to work it out (e.g. have her wash dishes or kick her out and ban her from the restaurant). In the later case, the police would give her a warning but not arrest her.

    "As to whether this is a police matter, well if it wasn't Micky D's but a scam artist on the street that pulled a bait and switch would you expect her to call 911? Micky D's are not special you know, they don't have special corporate rights."

    - It depends on if it was understood or McDonalds had posted a sign that states something along the lines of "All sales are final. Items not in stock my be substituted with items of equal or greater value as McDonalds' discretion" then there is no bait and switch as 1) the McNuggets were out of stock, 2) McDonalds offered an item of greater value. Also, unless she was put in danger by the scam artist, she still should call the local police and NOT 911.

    She had the right to over react to not getting her food or a refund. She had the right to be treated better by McDonalds. She has/had the right to be stupid. She did NOT have the right to be stupid on 911!

  71. Gianni Straniero
    Coat

    @michael: "I prefer to do that in privet"

    I guess you work for a hedge fund.

  72. Nameless Faceless Computer User
    Thumb Down

    Blown out of scope

    It doesn't matter which shop and which cash register I would have been in front of. If I hand a clerk money for goods, the money is taken out of my hands, then I'm told "Sorry, tough luck. We don't have the goods and we're not giving you a refund..." There would have been a lot of yelling and screaming. Matter of fact, it would be the manager of the store calling 911 to remove ME from the store. The woman was robbed. Screw the McNuggets.

  73. GHok

    IT angle

    911 is drilled into people's heads in the states. I doubt most people even know there's such thing as police non-emergency numbers.

    If you want an IT angle, the reason this woman probably didn't get a refund is that I'm sure most cashier point of sale systems make it exceptionally inconvienent to do a refund. It's designed this way so the minimum wage workers there can't do fake refunds and take the money. If you get a cashier that doesn't want to deal with the hassle (which surpirse, may happen often when you're dealing with apathetic teenagers!), or simply doesn't have the authority because the only slightly higher paid supervisor is out for a smoke, you get a situation like this.

    Anyone who has ever tried to do anything like a return or exchange at any major store should know what a big process it is. The cashier can't just open their register and give you back your money. I'm not even saying it's a bad system, but people should at least be aware of how things work.

    It may help the bottom line for the company, and it may very well deter internal theft but it's a pain in the ass if you sell someone some nuggets and then it turns out you don't have any.

  74. Scott Swarthout
    Alert

    The reason she was arrested...

    Was not because she called the Emergency number, but rather, because she called it 3 times. The first time, when the Cop finally arrived, he would have sorted it, if only to the point of informing them that it's civil, not criminal, and to sue each other. After the 3rd call his plans were changed to "get the nutjob off of the phone".

  75. Christopher E. Stith

    @Hud Dunlap

    The phone number for the "vehicle crimes squad" (which is different from the "auto theft unit") in Dallas, TX is 214-670-5817. Look here for more DPD phone numbers: http://www.dallaspolice.net/index.cfm?page_ID=2317&subnav=51 There, you didn't even have to pay for phone information.

    Dallas PD's web site does advise all crime reports to come through 911 in a place or two. They'd probably still be upset if you called three times about some chicken bits. That's abusing the system even if they do accept non-emergency calls at that number, and she wasn't reporting anything the second and third calls. She was just whining about not having an officer on scene yet.

  76. Chris
    Alert

    You want fries with that?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dDFyNqKHu7k

  77. Pierre Silver badge
    Stop

    @ jake about vegetables

    I stand by my guns. Bacon is a vegetable, not a staple nor a ruler or a pen or any kind of small office consumable. The hint here is that it's _edible_, y'see.

    "When over-utilized"

    Over-utilized? You can't over-utilize vegetables. Especially not bacon.

    And my diet is perfectly balanced.

  78. VampyreWolf

    refund

    But did she ever get her money back? She obviously never got her "food".

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