Texas Appellate Court Ruling Sends Steak ‘n Shake Sexual Assault Lawsuit to Jury Trial

Following nine-year appellate fight, jury trial next for Fears Nachawati trial lawyers

DALLAS – A lawsuit filed nine years ago on behalf of a former Steak ‘n Shake (NYSE: BH) employee, who sued the restaurant chain over claims that she was sexually assaulted by a manager, is finally headed to trial.

“Steak ‘n Shake has done everything possible to avoid accountability,” said trial lawyer Matthew McCarley, a partner at Dallas-based Fears Nachawati Law Firm. “Nine years is too long to wait for justice in a case like this, and we’re looking forward to finally having the chance for a jury to consider these very serious claims.”

According to the lawsuit, a female employee identified as B.C. sued the San Antonio-based casual restaurant chain for sexual assault after her manager at a Frisco, Texas, Steak ‘n Shake allegedly assaulted her during a late-night shift in 2011. At issue in the most recent appeal was whether the restaurant can be held liable for the manager’s actions.

“The third time was a charm at the Fifth Court,” writes Law360. “This third ruling overturned the restaurant’s victory and the nine-year-old case will return to the trial court where it can proceed to a trial.”

The case is B.C. v. Steak ‘n Shake Operations Inc., case number 05-14-00649-cv, in the Fifth Court of Appeals of Texas. In addition to Mr. McCarley and the Fears Nachawati Law Firm, Dallas-based attorney Matthew J. Kita handled appellate arguments.

“We had to go to the Supreme Court twice, and the last time, we went and got in there on a motion for rehearing—those aren’t granted very often,” Mr. McCarley told Texas Lawyer. “All I can say is the outcome speaks for itself. We were successful and got the outcome we wanted. I think it was good, good work.”

Dallas-based Fears | Nachawati Law Firm represents individuals, businesses and governmental entities in litigation, including sex abuse and sexual assault claims, business interruption claims arising from Coronavirus (COVID-19) and other natural disasters, serious personal injury and wrongful death, and mass torts arising from environmental damage and water contamination, as well as defective drug and medical device litigation. For more information, visit: https://www.fnlawfirm.com/.

Robert Tharp

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