Over $9M Verdict Against Cracker Barrel Where Man Was Served Cleaning Liquid Instead of Water

Cracker Barrel
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The man, however, will walk away with less than $1 million due to a state law.

A Tennessee jury has rendered a verdict of over $9 million against restaurant chain Cracker Barrel in connection with a customer who was served cleaning liquids instead of water, the New York Post reported.

William Cronnon was accidentally given a glass of the cleaning liquid while dining at one of the Tennessee branches of the restaurant in 2014. His mouth and esophagus burned after drinking the liquid thinking it was water, according to reports.

"Plaintiff William Cronnon ingested the beverage, which turned out to be a chemical, caustic substance known as Eco-San," an amended lawsuit claimed according to NBC News. "As a direct and proximate result of the incident, Plaintiff William Cronnon sustained severe and permeant injuries which required medical attention."

Eco-San is described as a corrosive chemical in the lawsuit and caused permanent and serious internal physical injury to Cronnon, the complaint obtained by CNN said.

His attorney, Thomas Greer, said in the court papers that Cronnon developed gastrointestinal issues like regular cramping, bloating, diarrhea and reflux plain shortly after the incident.

Earlier this month, a Marion County jury awarded Cronnon, $4.3 million in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages on Jan. 6, court documents obtained by WTVC.

But, Cronnon will only received about $750,000 in damages even though the jury found Cracker Barrel acted negligently. This is because of a limit on economic damages under Tennessee law, his lawyer told WTVC last week.

“This is an unfair law,” his attorney Thomas Greer said. “He will not receive anything close to what he is entitled to.”

Following the case, Cracker Barrel released a statement obtained by NBC News saying, "While we have great respect for the legal process, we are obviously disappointed by and strongly disagree with the jury’s award in this case, which involved an unfortunate and isolated incident that occurred at one of our stores eight years ago."

A spokesperson told NBC News that the restaurant was considering its options but was "glad this matter is behind us so we can better focus on caring for our guests and employees around the country."

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