Settlement Reached In Burger King Spitting Suit

BK franchisee settles over racially motivated food tampering

A Burger King franchisee in Ohio has opted to settle a federal lawsuit that has been going on for the past several years over a racially motivated spitting incident that occurred in 2008.

According to the Christian Science Monitor, Glenn Goodwin said a white employee at the Burger King spit in his Whopper Jr. while a manager attempted to block Goodwin’s view. Goodwin said he was the only black customer in the restaurant at the time, but he did not realize anything was amiss with the sandwich until he took it back to his truck and bit into it.

According to, Goodwin said the sandwich “had a ‘disgusting’ smell and seemed ‘extra wet.’” He contacted the police, and court records show that their tests indicated there was saliva inside and outside the sandwich, though the burger was thrown away before any DNA testing was done to figure out just who exactly had done the spitting.

The plaintiff, Fast Food Enterprises #3, tried several times to dispute the charges. First they argued that there was no evidence that anyone spat in the sandwich, or that the incident was racially motivated. Later they said that if a worker did spit on the sandwich, it was just out of immaturity. In the most recent attempt, the franchisee said it was not liable for the actions of an employee. The judge rejected those arguments.


The case was scheduled to go to trial on January 14. The terms of the settlement are unknown, but lawyers for the plaintiff and defendant both said the case was “resolved to the satisfaction of all parties,” but a confidentiality agreement kept them from saying anything more about the case.