On February 5th Denny’s settled a lawsuit brought on by an African-American couple who say they were forced to prepay for their food. The manager of the L.A. location in Koreatown claims he feared the couple would dine and dash. Video evidence also shows the couple having to wait far longer for their food than other guests. Lawyers for the couple claim that the racially-motivated treatment of these guests violated both company policy and state law.
The resolution came just before the third day of testimony was scheduled to begin in trial of the lawsuit filed in Los Angeles Superior Court against Denny’s and manager Ali Rahman in August 2014 by Henry Williams and Renee Hebert. Judge Michael Raphael dismissed the jury hearing the case.
The couple declined to comment on the settlement, as did the lawyers on both sides, who said the terms were confidential.
This would not be the first in what appears to be a long history of racially-motivated complaints against the restaurant chain. In 1994 alone Denny’s paid out $54 million to thousands of black customers who were mistreated at restaurants nationwide by being denied service or forced into long waits for tables. The plaintiffs in the racial-discrimination suits included six black secret service men assigned to Bill Clinton who were refused a table in Annapolis,Maryland as their white counterparts were promptly seated.