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A diner at N.Y. restaurant Chopt says her salad came with a finger in it

A lawsuit in Westchester County states the partially severed digit belonged to a restaurant manager.
Chop't logo in New York City
Charles Guerin / Abaca Press/Sipa USA via AP

A woman eating a salad at a New York restaurant this year discovered part of a finger in her food when she bit into the partially severed digit, according to a lawsuit filed Monday against the restaurant, Chopt.  

The suit, filed in Westchester County Supreme Court, alleges that the finger belonged to a manager who had been cutting arugula on April 7 when she chopped off part of her left pointer finger. 

The employee went to the hospital and left the contaminated arugula in the service line, the suit alleges.

According to the suit, the incident caused the plaintiff "serious personal injuries," including traumatic stress, cognitive impairment, vomiting and shoulder pain.

The local Health Department later issued a ticket to the restaurant for violating state rules aimed at preventing imminent health hazards, the suit says, adding that the restaurant did not contest the violation.

The suit claims the restaurant and its employees were reckless, careless and negligent. The complaint, which names Chopt and a restaurant group, Founders Table, as defendants, does not specify how much the plaintiff is seeking in damages, under state law.

Chopt did not immediately respond to a request for comment. A message left at a phone number listed for Founders Table was not returned.

In an email, the customer's lawyer, Marc Reibman, said his client had no comment beyond the lawsuit.

"She does not want to increase the stress and anxiety that this incident has caused her," Reibman said, adding: "As a matter of common sense and public interest, the failure to supervise the preparation and service of food in a manner that protects the public is a blatant deviation from accepted safe practice and deserves significant compensation."