Dead rat said to be found in McDonald's salad
NFL coach, wife and nanny reportedly file a lawsuit seeking $1.7 million, claiming they found dead rat in salad, according to a published report.

NEW YORK ( -- An NFL coach, his wife and the family's nanny are suing a McDonald's franchisee, alleging they found a dead rat in a salad purchased at his Southlake, Texas, restaurant, according to the Dallas Morning News.

The lawsuit, seeking $1.7 million in damages, was filed Thursday in state district court on behalf of Cowboys passing-game coordinator Todd Haley, his wife, Christine Haley, and the family's live-in baby sitter, Kathryn Kelley, according to the paper.

"We tried to work this out," Scott Casterline, a spokesman for the Haley family told the paper. "We were forced to file a lawsuit. It's a tragic situation for any family to go through."

According to the lawsuit, Mrs. Haley and Ms. Kelley purchased a salad on June 5 at the drive-through of the McDonald's and ate part of it before uncovering a dead rodent thought to be a juvenile rat, the paper said.

The women called the Southlake McDonald's, and a manager came to the house to examine the salad, according to the report. The manager asked to take the salad and rat, but the women declined, the paper said.

"We haven't yet seen the litigation so we can't respond to the claims," a McDonald's spokesman told CNN. "Nothing is more important to us than the safety and well-being of our customers."

In a statement provided by the fast-food giant, Ken Loabato, the owner of the Southlake restaurant, said :"We maintain the strictest quality standards. We take these matters seriously and are conducting a full investigation to get all the facts. In my years as an owner/operator, I've never seen anything like this."

According to the paper, both women said they suffered severe mental and physical pain and that their dining habits have been altered.

"Something has to be done to prevent this from ever happening again and to help these ladies to get over this," Casterline told the paper.

The news comes on the heels of McDonald's (down $0.61 to $41.50, Charts) reporting higher third-quarter profit, which beat analysts' forecasts.

In 2005 Wendy's International (Charts) faced bad publicity surrounding an alleged food contamination accusation, which ultimately proved to be false but affected the company's sales nonetheless.


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