The $2.7 Million Coffee Spill

Is McDonald's really supposed to pay $2.7 million to some clumsy customer?


Many of the jurors had entered the courtroom sure they were going to hear a ridiculous, frivolous lawsuit. The strength of the evidence and the apparent callousness of a large corporation swayed their thinking. The jurors were proud and confident of their decision. It has also been reported that the McDonald's in Albuquerque now sells their coffee at 158 degrees.

Most cops hate the "Headline Media." Very few of the serious situations we encounter can be properly summed up in a headline, a sound bite or a 90 second news story. After critical incidents, we are trained to keep our mouths shut. It is during this time that anti-police factions spout off with half-truths and bald-faced lies. We are quiet because we know when the facts come out, we will be exonerated. We are not allowed, nor would it be to our benefit, to try cases in the media. The media rarely has any stake in pursuing justice; they are much more concerned with pursuing profits.

As law enforcement officers, all we want is a fair shake in a court of law. Let all the facts come out, and then judge my actions. We must afford the same courtesy to other branches of the criminal justice system. After years of hearing about frivolous lawsuits, it was easy to assume McDonald's was being sued by some gold-digging angler. As the case turned out, it was McDonald's that was burned by their own corporate callousness. In the end, the much maligned system worked. It started out as the craziest damn lawsuit I had ever heard, but wound up restoring my faith in the criminal justice system.

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