'Early Bird' Food Fight at Golden Corral: 1 Senior Arrested

By Brett Snider, Esq. on March 24, 2014 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

A cantankerous senior citizen was arrested at Golden Corral for instigating a food fight among the "early bird" diners.

Polly Richards, 64, faces two counts of assault and battery after a food fight broke out at the all-you-can-eat buffet restaurant about 3:45 p.m. last Tuesday, according to Greenville's WITN-TV. Richards allegedly throttled Linwood Moore, 69, while in line and threw a plate of food at Fay Cardwell, 62.

What allegedly ruffled this angry early bird's feathers?

Seniors Serve Up Surly Bird Special

The scene of the alleged crime was a Golden Corral in Wilkesboro, North Carolina. According to WITN, after Moore moved around Richards in the buffet line, the sexagenarian allegedly grabbed the elderly man by the shirt, shoved him into a wall, and possibly slapped him.

This kind of alleged restaurant roughness would be considered assault and battery in most states.

In North Carolina, these sort of simple scuffles are misdemeanor offenses, so unless Richards has a long rap sheet, she'll likely get off with community service. If she is convicted, her punishment will likely be up to a judge, so she may still get some jail time if she doesn't show remorse -- or throws food in the courtroom.

Food Fight Liability

Regardless of whether Richards is found guilty in criminal court, she's still likely liable for her alleged assaults and batteries in civil court. Cardwell, who WITN reports was allegedly hit in the leg by Richard's meal-time missile, could potentially sue the disgruntled diner for injuries she received during the food fight.

In a civil battery suit, an injured party must prove that the defendant intentionally caused unwanted contact to his or her person without consent. According to WITN, Cardwell received a "knot on her shin and knee" as a result of being hit by the plate.

While senior citizens may bruise or injure more easily than others, if Richards is found guilty of battery, she'll likely have to compensate Cardwell's for her injuries despite her level of fragility. Same goes for Moore, who allegedly has a heart condition.

WITN reports that Richards' parting words after the Golden Corral food fight were, "Just take me to the [expletive] jail then." Maybe Richards was moody because the buffet ran out of fried okra.

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