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Appeals court finds cook, not restaurant, liable for hairy steak

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food River Falls, 54022
River Falls Wisconsin 2815 Prairie Drive / P.O. Box 25 54022

A diner who found human hair in a steak will not receive $125,000 in damages from the restaurant that served it.

A state appeals court in Waukesha said the Texas Roadhouse in West Bend did nothing wrong and the blame should go to the offending cook. Kevin Hansen ordered a steak in 2008 then claimed it was overcooked.

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The manager offered a replacement steak that Hansen could take home - but the cook, Ryan Kropp, thought Hansen was just trying to get some free food. Kropp reacted by putting some of his hair in a slit he cut in the replacement steak.

A jury said the Texas Roadhouse was not negligent but still ordered the restaurant to pay $125,000 in punitive and compensatory damages. The restaurant appealed.

And Wednesday, Dec. 5, the Second District Appellate Court in Waukesha said the restaurant was not liable because it didn't cause Kropp's conduct. It said the cook was solely to blame.

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