Kroger seeks summary judgment in tainted lobster suit

David Yates Jun. 27, 2011, 9:32am

Kroger will soon argue there is no evidence showing that a Beaumont grocery store sold a tainted lobster to a local woman.

As previously reported, Paula Richardson filed suit against Kroger on April 9, 2009, in Jefferson County District Court, alleging her food poisoning was caused by eating lobster purchased from the market.

On June 22 a notice of hearing was filed in the case, tentatively setting a summary judgment hearing on the matter for June 29.

Kroger filed a motion for summary judgment on Dec. 1, 2009, arguing that Richardson has failed to produce a witness to testify that she ate and was sickened by the lobster or produce a receipt showing she purchased the lobster from Kroger.

In her suit, Richardson says she became violently ill after eating a frozen lobster she had purchased from the Kroger located at 3845 Phelan Blvd. in Beaumont on April 13, 2007.

Richardson prepared the lobster on April 15, 2007, and suffered extreme food poisoning after its consumption, court papers say.

According to the complaint, Kroger failed to inspect the frozen lobster and equipment used in maintaining its freshness, failed to properly maintain the frozen lobster, failed to properly warn Richardson about the condition of the lobster and enticed Richardson
to purchase the defective lobster.

During the hearing, Kroger will most likely argue that there is no evidence supporting Richardson's allegations, according to its motion.

Richardson is seeking unspecified damages, plus pre- and post-judgment interest and other relief to which she may be entitled.

Kent W. Johns of Beaumont represents her.

Kroger is represented by Houston attorney Brook Akers.

Judge Bob Wortham of the 58th District Court is presiding over the case.

Case No. A183-754

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