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Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:06 AM

Woman receives bill after making restroom pit stop

ERIN, TN (WSMV) -

A license plate gives police a whole lot of information about you, and law enforcement is supposed to protect those details. However, one local sheriff admits he gave a driver's name and address away, and the reason he did it is downright bizarre.

The story all came about when a woman stopped to use a restaurant's restroom and then left without buying anything.

A few days later, the woman checked her mail to find a bill from that restaurant, asking her to pay for using their restroom. And it turns out the sheriff, himself, helped the restaurant's owners track her down.

"I just feel like I've been violated," Patricia Barnes said.

Barnes received a handwritten letter that asked for $5 because she used the restroom at The Flood Zone in Houston County.

http://www.wsmv.com/story/21310627/woman-receives-bill-after-taking-a-restroom-pit-stop

102 replies, 7265 views

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Reply Woman receives bill after making restroom pit stop (Original post)
The Straight Story Feb 2013 OP
Jenoch Feb 2013 #1
Xithras Feb 2013 #2
rustydog Feb 2013 #9
madinmaryland Feb 2013 #12
Xithras Feb 2013 #18
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #19
Xithras Feb 2013 #20
proud2BlibKansan Feb 2013 #33
Xithras Feb 2013 #34
shanti Feb 2013 #70
KittyWampus Feb 2013 #54
Blue_Tires Feb 2013 #66
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #67
ProudToBeBlueInRhody Feb 2013 #71
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #36
Drale Feb 2013 #51
KittyWampus Feb 2013 #57
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #61
Bay Boy Feb 2013 #88
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #92
Bay Boy Feb 2013 #97
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #98
Bay Boy Feb 2013 #99
snagglepuss Feb 2013 #101
notadmblnd Feb 2013 #84
KittyWampus Feb 2013 #53
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #55
KittyWampus Feb 2013 #60
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #63
Sheldon Cooper Feb 2013 #56
KittyWampus Feb 2013 #58
xmas74 Feb 2013 #85
MattBaggins Feb 2013 #41
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #13
Xithras Feb 2013 #16
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #17
MattBaggins Feb 2013 #42
Heywood J Feb 2013 #69
Blue_Tires Feb 2013 #21
NCTraveler Feb 2013 #25
alcibiades_mystery Feb 2013 #26
magical thyme Feb 2013 #29
Blue_Tires Feb 2013 #31
magical thyme Feb 2013 #35
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #38
magical thyme Feb 2013 #68
tblue37 Feb 2013 #91
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #94
MattBaggins Feb 2013 #43
MattBaggins Feb 2013 #39
dsc Feb 2013 #3
Blue_Tires Feb 2013 #24
Javaman Feb 2013 #4
JaneyVee Feb 2013 #5
OldDem2012 Feb 2013 #6
Blue_Tires Feb 2013 #22
City Lights Feb 2013 #7
gollygee Feb 2013 #8
bullwinkle428 Feb 2013 #11
AsahinaKimi Feb 2013 #14
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #15
reflection Feb 2013 #10
MattBaggins Feb 2013 #44
jsr Feb 2013 #23
alcibiades_mystery Feb 2013 #27
jberryhill Feb 2013 #32
Capt. Obvious Feb 2013 #28
get the red out Feb 2013 #30
KurtNYC Feb 2013 #59
get the red out Feb 2013 #64
niyad Feb 2013 #77
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #37
The Straight Story Feb 2013 #47
bkkyosemite Feb 2013 #40
MineralMan Feb 2013 #45
Ian David Feb 2013 #46
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #48
laundry_queen Feb 2013 #87
msanthrope Feb 2013 #49
The Straight Story Feb 2013 #50
Ian David Feb 2013 #89
Auntie Bush Feb 2013 #52
Apophis Feb 2013 #62
blm Feb 2013 #65
DearHeart Feb 2013 #72
niyad Feb 2013 #73
DearHeart Feb 2013 #75
oldhippie Feb 2013 #83
Raine Feb 2013 #74
niyad Feb 2013 #78
Brigid Feb 2013 #76
Matariki Feb 2013 #79
liberal N proud Feb 2013 #80
Moonwalk Feb 2013 #81
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #95
Moonwalk Feb 2013 #96
dembotoz Feb 2013 #82
Tommy_Carcetti Feb 2013 #93
NoPasaran Feb 2013 #86
Kalidurga Feb 2013 #90
frogmarch Feb 2013 #100
appleannie1 Feb 2013 #102

Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:29 AM

1. There are many jurisdictions in Minnesota

(Minneapolis is one) in which the police department will not even go after people who pump gasoline into their tanks and drive off without paying. Yes, there are still many gas stations in Minnesota where fuel can be pumped without first pre-paying. Years ago, before check cards, debit cards and the like, people used to be able to write checks for gasoline in Minnesota. A guy I knew who had recently moved to Minnesota from New York found it amazing and a little quaint.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:39 AM

2. Theft of service.

Err, she committed a crime. The sign on the outer door said that the restrooms weren't available for public use. The next sign made it clear that there was a $5 fee for using the rest room if you weren't a customer. She walked in, used it, and left without paying. That's theft of service (just like turnstile jumping) and is a criminal offense just about anywhere.

She's complaining that, instead of demanding that she be cited or arrested (don't know the specifics of TN law), the owner simply asked for her address so they could send a bill?

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Response to Xithras (Reply #2)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 11:14 AM

9. Nope, WRONGO bucko

you call police, report defrauding an inkeeper to said police who will investigate, turn information over to city attorney or prosecutor who contacts the evil bathroom user and charges them. A ticket is issued or they are arrested.

You don't just get to give the contact information over for what may be a stalking issue, or just an outright false police report.

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Response to rustydog (Reply #9)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 11:28 AM

12. Seems to be an odd waste of taxpayer money to recoup $5. Based on what I read, they

probably wasted 4 hours of time on this which is worth many times the amount of $5.


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Response to rustydog (Reply #9)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:06 PM

18. Maybe in WA.

But I know for a fact that, in California and most other states, you can be cuffed for skipping out on a tab.

Eons ago, I worked at a movie theater that regularly had people arrested (cuffed and taken away in the back of a black and white) for sneaking into movies without paying. One of my sisters runs a restaurant and occasionally has ticket skippers arrested for the same thing.

Whether your local PD is willing to pursue these may be a different story, but in my experience people CAN be arrested for skipping out on tabs like this. The price was posted, she used the "service", and then she left without paying. It's turnstile jumping, only she's using a toilet instead of a train.

I do happen to agree that the police shouldn't have given the store owner her info, but I'm shocked that she's whining about it in public like this. She's a thief, and she's complaining that the police gave her info to the store owner instead of pursuing her criminally. It makes her look like an idiot.

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Response to Xithras (Reply #18)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:10 PM

19. "She's a thief."

Oh, seriously.

The only ones looking like idiots are the restaraunt owners for trying charge people $5 for taking a crap in their toilet (that's price gouging if I've ever seen it) and then hunting them down afterwards.

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Response to Tommy_Carcetti (Reply #19)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:24 PM

20. Quite seriously

I work in a service based business. If someone takes the service and does not pay, we pursue them via both civil and criminal means...every time, without exception (though to be fair, in my case, our services are worth considerably more than a crapper).

It's their "service". They put a price on it. The price was posted. She used it. She had no complaints about the service, but skipped on the bill anyway. That's theft.

The owner, instead of pursuing civil or criminal remedies, sent her a note and a bill. If she was a decent human being, she would have apologized and paid it. If she couldn't afford it, she could have at least apologized. Instead, she had a temper tantrum like some deadbeat and ran to the press complaining about "could-have' happened's". Nothing happened. She wasn't harassed or stalked. She just got a bill for a service that, by her own admission, she used and failed to pay for.

Sure, the cop should NOT have given the store owner her information. I've already said as much. But that doesn't make her any less of a whiny deadbeat thief. She should have paid the $5 and been thankful that the owner didn't pursue any other means. Had they done so, the whole thing would have cost her considerably more than $5.

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Response to Xithras (Reply #20)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:46 PM

33. If the owner of that restaurant was a decent human being,

he'd let folks use the restroom.

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Response to proud2BlibKansan (Reply #33)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:54 PM

34. One does not preclude the other

Yes, the owner is an ass for charging to use a toilet. If I walked into a place that did that, I'd walk right back out.

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Response to Xithras (Reply #34)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 07:03 PM

70. maybe she was sick or had the runs

good grief, i can't believe someone's sticking up for this idiotic practice!

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Response to proud2BlibKansan (Reply #33)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 03:11 PM

54. Why? It's their for his patrons use. It costs money and time to clean it up. I've worked in retail

where we started out allowing the public to use the toilet and stopped because people are SLOBS who will leave a heinous mess behind expecting others to clean up after them.

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Response to proud2BlibKansan (Reply #33)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 04:12 PM

66. Clearly that owner is lacking for brains

Since the time, effort and energy of tracking down the motorist and mailing the "bill" are way beyond $5

I'm surprised they're still in business -- But the restaurant is in a sorta isolated place, so not a lot of competition...

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Response to Blue_Tires (Reply #66)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 04:25 PM

67. Not a lot of competition for available restrooms, either.

Hence why this stinks of a lame brain price gouging scheme.

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Response to proud2BlibKansan (Reply #33)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 07:06 PM

71. You'd think people would be grateful....

....well, guess what....most are not and will shit on the walls in there.

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Response to Xithras (Reply #20)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 01:38 PM

36. My guess is the cost to the restaurant to provide the restrooms is negligable.

I mean, really, really negligble. In terms of water usage and toilet paper usage, maybe a cent or two, probably much less.

Yet they charge $5.00 a pop for a "service" that costs them >$0.01. If someone was charging $10 a gallon gas after a hurricane, you'd rightfully call that price gouging. Why is this any different?

The only people who look bad in the story is the restaurant. As evidenced by their quick backpeddling that they would no longer be charging money for people to use the restroom.

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Response to Xithras (Reply #20)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 03:00 PM

51. My town created a law just for asshole restaurant managers like this

if you have a bathroom customers can you, then anyone can use it without having to pay. Now there is add on that if you damage the bathroom or make a mess you can be charged for that but they can not say that you can not use the bathroom and I think its a damn good law.

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Response to Drale (Reply #51)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 03:13 PM

57. So restaurants must send employees in to check after every asshole NON-patron comes in to use

the bathroom to make sure there's no disgusting mess?

You think it's a damn good law because you aren't the one having to clean up other people's mess on a constant basis… people who aren't even leaving you a tip or patronizing the restaurant you work in.

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #57)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 03:19 PM

61. Then charge non-customers a penny to use the restroom.

Because when you prorate the expense involved in restroom maintenence per every individual who uses the restroom (soap, water, toilet paper) on a one time basis, that's what it is probably going to cost.

Certainly not $5, that's for sure.

And the establishment is going to have to clean the restroom on a daily basis regardless if it's only used by paying customers or if it includes non-paying individuals, so the question of cleaning is wholly irrelevant.

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Response to Tommy_Carcetti (Reply #61)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 09:01 PM

88. Some businesses are located in areas

that are more likely to attract people who only want to use the potty. A restaurant across the street from a park for example. If they didn't restrict usage to patrons only or charged for it's use it would be constantly used by the non-paying park patrons.

Five bucks seems high but some fee would be fair.

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Response to Bay Boy (Reply #88)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 11:17 PM

92. That's where the "bathroom key" approach comes in handy.

You go to the counter, ask for the key.

If the person asking to use the restroom has a record of using the bathroom for improper purposes (i.e. other than for nature's duty), key denied.

But charging $5 a pop? That just comes off as fundamentally wrong IMHO.

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Response to Tommy_Carcetti (Reply #92)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 06:44 PM

97. Have you ever seen a bathroom key

at a restaurant? I haven't.

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Response to Bay Boy (Reply #97)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 06:47 PM

98. I've used one at a Starbucks in downtown Miami. nt

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Response to Tommy_Carcetti (Reply #98)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 06:57 PM

99. I guess a big city thing.

On the other hand we will have a St Patricks Day parade in my little town soon and I have seen signs on restaurants along the route that say the bathrooms are for customers only. Porta potties are available along the route but some people don't like them.

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Response to Tommy_Carcetti (Reply #61)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 07:26 PM

101. Back in the 60s when I was a kid I remember bathrooms in terminals and

dept stores having some stalls that required a nickel to use, supposedly those stalls were kept cleaner. I think bathrooms shoud be free since sities no longer maintain public facilties however if businesses decide to charge anything higher than .50 is price gouging.

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #57)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 08:19 PM

84. when I worked in retail, we were required to service the restroom once an hour

Never once did any customer shit on the walls as someone up thread stated that most people would do. Never once did anyone leave a hell of a mess for anyone that used the restroom behind them.

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Response to Tommy_Carcetti (Reply #19)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 03:08 PM

53. Ever work retail where you have to clean public toilets? I think not. Cause I have. The messes

people can leave behind are truly heinous.

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #53)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 03:11 PM

55. When I was a lifeguard, I would have to clean the bathrooms at the pool at times.

And yes, it could be disgusting.

But are paying customers any less likely to leave a mess than non-paying individuals? So what exactly does that have to do with the price of eggs in China purchased by rocket surgeons?

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Response to Tommy_Carcetti (Reply #55)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 03:18 PM

60. Paying customers are PAYING. And btw, restaurants with seating are required to have bathrooms for

patrons to use.

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #60)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 03:21 PM

63. And those restrooms have to be cleaned periodically regardless.

It's not as though the fact that only allowing paying customers to use the restroom absolves the establishment from having to clean it.

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #53)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 03:11 PM

56. And I'd bet a great deal of those messes were made by paying

customers. So, I still think the restaurant owner is an ass.

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Response to Sheldon Cooper (Reply #56)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 03:14 PM

58. Right. Paying customers who are PAYING.

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #53)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 08:21 PM

85. I've worked retail.

I've worked in food service off-and-on for many years. (In a bad economy it's proven to be a lifesaver for my family.) Hell, I've worked nights in fast food and overnights in gas stations, which are the rotting pit of all service. I've cleaned up items I had no idea what they once were and things that should be considered biohazard.

Guess what? I'd still never consider charging someone for a restroom. If someone makes an especially heinous mess and the customer behind them complains, I'd call the police. I did that, twice, while working in a gas station. I won't get into specifics but a mess was made, customer behind them complained, I saw it, I called the police and gave license info. In most places the charge is vandalism.

I've also worked in places where only customers could use the restrooms. They were actually left in worse shape.

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Response to Xithras (Reply #18)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 01:59 PM

41. You might look like an idiot for thinking that it's legal to charge for a toilet

Do the laws rquire the establishment to provide bathrooms for employees and customers, or for all patrons and visitors and operate them as public?

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Response to Xithras (Reply #2)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 11:46 AM

13. Pretty loose definition of "service" if you ask me.

Especially at five dollars a crap. What, are the toilets made of gold?

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Response to Tommy_Carcetti (Reply #13)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 11:52 AM

16. Doesn't much matter.

If a restaraunt sells pancakes for $500, do you get to skip the bill because the price is too high for the service offered? If the price was clearly posted, and she used it anyway, she was obligated to pay it. If she thought the price was too high, she could have "gone" elsewhere.

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Response to Xithras (Reply #16)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 11:56 AM

17. Looks like they learned their lesson from their own stupidity.

From the story:

The owner of The Flood Zone would not do an on-camera interview, but she said they are no longer charging to use their bathrooms.

She added that she would never accept Barnes' payment and just wanted to get her point across.
_____________________________________________________

Hope the bad publicity they got from "getting their point across" was well worth it.

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Response to Xithras (Reply #16)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 02:00 PM

42. Clearly posted doesn't mean shit

If it was clearly posted that you had to spend at least 5000 dollars to ask for a glass of water that sign would be meaningless.

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Response to Xithras (Reply #16)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 06:53 PM

69. Sometimes you can, sometimes you can't.

Explain to someone whose last meal isn't sitting too well and whose legs are crossed how they can "go" elsewhere and how much choice they have on the free market of public toilets.

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Response to Tommy_Carcetti (Reply #13)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:25 PM

21. You could make a pretty strong legal argument that the "service"

is provided by the Houston County water works, not the restaurant...

Either way, that Sheriff really overstepped his legal authority...

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Response to Blue_Tires (Reply #21)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:36 PM

25. The restaurant pays for that service.

And yes, the Sheriff really overstepped his authority.

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Response to Blue_Tires (Reply #21)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:36 PM

26. Next time I pay thousands of dollars to get my bathroom remodeled

I'll remind myself that it is not really mine, but the City of Chicago's...on account of the sewer system and whatnot...or something.

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Response to Blue_Tires (Reply #21)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:40 PM

29. really?

Houston County paid to build the toilet, pays for the plumbing repairs, cleaning, toilet paper, soap, paper towels and provides free water?

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Response to magical thyme (Reply #29)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:44 PM

31. Yeah, the county gets off cheap...All they do is pipe the shit out and magically pipe fresh water in

I'm just saying any decent attorney could tear apart the $5 charge if it went to court...

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Response to Blue_Tires (Reply #31)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 01:21 PM

35. You're saying the county provides free water and sewage

That's a surprise to me. I thought homeowners and businesses paid for that service.

While billing the woman was stupid, I don't think a lawyer could hurt the $5 charge. As others have written, the restaurant can charge what they want, and patrons can take their shit elsewhere if think something's overpriced.

I, for one, make a point of purchasing something if I need to use a restaurant's bathroom. They are providing a service and a convenience.

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Response to magical thyme (Reply #35)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 01:50 PM

38. Sometimes you just have to go.

Speaking from experience, I've found myself in situations on long road trips where I'm not hungry, thirsty or in need of gas, but my bladder is about to explode. So I stop by the first establishment I see, because it is highly preferable to relieving myself in my own clothes or having to embarassingly find a spot on the side of the road (and that would only be an option if it's strictly Number One).

In terms of the amount of water, toilet paper and soap used by a single bathroom patron, it's a negligible amount. My guess is less than a cent. Certainly not $5 worth.

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Response to Tommy_Carcetti (Reply #38)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 06:09 PM

68. same here, but I still make a point of buying something, anything

it's just how I am. If there's a convenience store, I'll buy a little something for later, in exchange for the convenience. If it's a restaurant, then I'll get something take out.

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Response to magical thyme (Reply #68)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 10:35 PM

91. That's what I do, too. I'd feel chintzy if I used a restroom without purchasing something from the

store, even if it's just a cup of water, a pack of gum, or a cup of coffee.

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Response to magical thyme (Reply #68)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 11:29 PM

94. Often I do so as well, but I don't feel obligated to do so.

It's a toilet, in a place open to the general public. Basic human decency says you should allow someone else to do one's duty regardless of profit.

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Response to magical thyme (Reply #35)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 02:02 PM

43. No they can not charge what they want

depending on state and local regulations they most likely have to operate their facilities as public bathrooms.

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Response to Xithras (Reply #2)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 01:51 PM

39. Just because you put up a sign doesn't make it so.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:46 AM

3. It seems to me that instead of giving out the info

the sheriff should have mailed the bill to the couple.

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Response to dsc (Reply #3)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:33 PM

24. ummm...no

Like post #9 says, the sheriff should only get involved if there is an official complaint and police report...

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 10:52 AM

4. I'd pay that fine...via a bag of pennies. nt

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 10:54 AM

5. Ridiculous.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 11:06 AM

6. What's next? Charging people for breathing the air in a business if they don't buy anything? nt.

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Response to OldDem2012 (Reply #6)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:28 PM

22. Don't give them any ideas...

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 11:08 AM

7. Outrageous.

Complete waste (and abuse) of taxpayer funding.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 11:12 AM

8. Well it's safe to say she'll never be a customer now

Nor will a number of other people who saw the news. Stupid restaurant. Bad bad PR.

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Response to gollygee (Reply #8)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 11:22 AM

11. BINGO - they just generated way more than $5 worth of bad publicity,

and I hope they get hammered for that.

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Response to bullwinkle428 (Reply #11)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 11:49 AM

14. Agree.

eom.

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Response to bullwinkle428 (Reply #11)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 11:50 AM

15. Nice one star review they've earned themselves.....

http://www.yelp.com/biz/the-flood-zone-erin

All thanks to the incident.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 11:15 AM

10. That "sheriff" comes across as a total bumpkin,

oblivious to the laws he is sworn to uphold. And seeing as how I am from TN also, I think I can call him a bumpkin without retribution.

On edit: She should say "That bathroom was so filthy I turned around and left. Prove I used it."

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Response to reflection (Reply #10)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 02:06 PM

44. This would be the ultimate revenge on the Yelp site

I am one of those people who decides on whether or not to eat at a restaurant by checking out the bathroom first and that place was nasty.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:30 PM

23. Smart move there

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:38 PM

27. Why am I the only one amused that the restaurant's name is THE FLOOD ZONE

and they're hyper-concerned about bathroom usage?

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Response to alcibiades_mystery (Reply #27)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:46 PM

32. They have to pump it uphill to get it out


That's why the charge.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:38 PM

28. That's why I just pee behind their dumpster

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 12:41 PM

30. Did the restaurant post anything I wonder?

I didn't see that in the article. It seems like if they expected someone to buy something in order to use their restrooms they should have had a sign posted somewhere to that effect.

The Sheriff was way out of line handing her information over like that, if she broke a law he should have handled that in his law enforcement capacity. If she didn't break a law, the whole thing was between the restaurant owners and the lady herself, he shouldn't have gotten involved.

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Response to get the red out (Reply #30)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 03:14 PM

59. Yes they did. Their handwritten note (with random punctuation) to her is also here:

http://www.wsmv.com/story/21310627/woman-receives-bill-after-taking-a-restroom-pit-stop

Unless she messed up or vandalized the bathroom in some they should have just let it go it would seem.

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Response to KurtNYC (Reply #59)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 03:21 PM

64. At least they had a sign

But yea, getting the Sheriff involved was way over the top.

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Response to KurtNYC (Reply #59)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 07:59 PM

77. it only says they have these signs, and that the one about the $5 charge was somewhere in the

restroom--perhaps she did not see it. and perhaps she did not see the sign on the front door--lots of people miss things that are right in front of them.

years ago, I was with a friend who wanted to go to hobby lobby. I had to use the restroom, and saw a sign in that very dark hallway (which was all the way in the back of the store) that, if they decided you were doing anything wrong, they had the right to pursue you all the way out to your car, and search it. this was "posted" but in a place almost nobody would see. my friend and I called the manager over, and pointed out that, since that was their attitude, and since they "posted" it in such an overlooked place, they clearly did not want our business. and then she learned that hobby lobby is owned by a fundie reichwinger. she has not been in since (and that was the only time I had been in in many years)

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 01:42 PM

37. Phone number for The Flood Zone is 931-289-5848

Feel free to call them to ask whether they accept reservations for the restroom.

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Response to Tommy_Carcetti (Reply #37)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 02:21 PM

47. I wanna know the menu for it, more for #1 than #2, is it buffet style?

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 01:55 PM

40. There have been times in my old age that

I had to rush to use a bathroom of a resturant and I would ask where their bathroom was. I would never go there to eat if I saw a sign that said $5. to use the toilet. Most likely those that live in the town would frequent that resturant and eat there on occasion if they knew a bathroom existed and used it. I would not go there again and I would tell everyone I knew that they charge you $5. if you have to pee and can't make it home yet you had a hamburger there the other day. My scenario not the woman's but hey it's a bad reputation sounding plan indeed.
I remember when they used to charge for public bathroom use and everyone used to climb under the door. This is outrageous to pay for a human frequency that sometimes occurs when you least expect it. Come on everyone has to pee and poop and sometimes badly.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 02:19 PM

45. Well, the restaurant is reaping the bad publicity

it deserves. Cheap jack roadside establishment owners who are buttheads about their restroom deserve to go under.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 02:20 PM

46. How many people stop in just to use the restroom, and end-up buying something?

The restroom isn't a service.

It's a means of attracting new customers, who may or may not choose to buy something once they are inside.

And even if the customer doesn't buy something THAT time, if they have a pleasant experience, and like what they see, they may buy something the next time.

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Response to Ian David (Reply #46)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 02:39 PM

48. Good point.

A free toilet might just be the perfect advertisement.

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Response to Ian David (Reply #46)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 08:58 PM

87. You are absolutely right

I've done a lot of 'road trips' since at one point I lived a 12 hour drive away from my family and a flight was far too expensive, so I drove. There were a few places along the way I would stop to use the restroom. Sometimes I bought something, sometimes I didn't. If I didn't, and they had a nice, clean restroom and looked like a nice place, I was likely to make sure I stopped at that place again, either on the way back or the next time I was passing through. And, I would often end up buying something the next time I stopped in.

This one place I drove by was a run down dump so I had never stopped there but when I was newly pregnant I HAD to go, so I stopped and didn't buy anything but noticed a corner of the store that had some local First Nation's crafts that were beautiful. The next time I stopped in I bought a few crafts for Christmas gifts that year. Had the owner chased me down after my first visit for not buying something, it's not very likely I'd have bought any crafts as I never would have set foot in that store again.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 02:52 PM

49. The Sherriff who ran the plates is Darrell Allison, 931-289-3633 (work)

The Houston County Mayor is G.E. Clark 931.289.3633 (work)

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Response to msanthrope (Reply #49)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 02:53 PM

50. We should all add that to cell phones and call whenever someone goes to the bathroom

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Response to The Straight Story (Reply #50)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 10:20 PM

89. THAT is an AWESOME idea! In fact, my wife didn't replace the toilet paper roll when it ran out.

I should let him know, in case he wants to issue her a ticket.

Also, he might be interested to know that my last poop was a firm, brown sinker.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 03:04 PM

52. Next time she should buy a bag of flour and toss it around.

Not very nice but getting what they deserve.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 03:20 PM

62. What a gross misuse of taxpayer money.

 

What a waste of time and resources just to give the woman a $5 ticket.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 03:55 PM

65. Fascism. Unfettered capitalism. BushInc's getting the NWO they wanted.

.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 07:35 PM

72. Most anywhere in Europe, it's not free of charge to use the bathrooms

Even if you're eating at a McDonald's, and go to use the restroom that is "free" because you paid for the food, you are still "required/expected" to drop some coins on the plate for the bathroom attendants. If you're using a "public" restroom, you have to pay. At least in Greece and Prague. Went to a wedding in Greece and had to pay the attendants in a private restaurant where the reception was held! That was unexpected; good thing I had change with me!

Whenever I use the restroom, either at a gas station (on a trip) or at a fast food restaurant, I always make a purchase. I feel, IMHO, that it's pretty much common courtesy.

But, I don't approve of the sheriff giving the restaurant owner the woman's personal information. If there is a law/statute against the public using the restroom, and a fine is involved, then have the sheriff send the woman a "ticket", but he should never give that woman's private info to a private business owner.

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Response to DearHeart (Reply #72)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 07:45 PM

73. umm, when was the last time you saw a bathroom attendant in a mcd's stateside? or any

restaurant except the classy ones?

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Response to niyad (Reply #73)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 07:51 PM

75. Never have, but they should have them...they're disgusting usually!

Never been to a restaurant here that had attendants...don't make that much money. Besides, I'm just trying to point out that most everywhere else, you have to pay something to use the bathroom, granted not $5, but something!

Hope you have a nice night!

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Response to DearHeart (Reply #75)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 08:17 PM

83. Restrooms at the rest stops on the Autobahn ....

 

... were 0.5 Euro the last time I was there (2009).

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 07:50 PM

74. The sheriff should be in big trouble for giving out that information. nt

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Response to Raine (Reply #74)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 08:02 PM

78. that sheriff thinks he is above the law, apparently



Tidwell said the law dictates that information from a license plate should only be used for law enforcement purposes and not be given out to the public.

The sheriff said he sees it differently.

"I would have to know you, one, and I would have to know that you're not the type of person that would just come to me or any officer wanting information about somebody or something," Allison said.

Now, Barnes and her husband wonder what could've happened if that information got into the wrong hands, because they have gone to great lengths to keep their address unlisted after taking out a restraining order against someone in their past.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 07:51 PM

76. That sheriff must mot have much to do.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 08:07 PM

79. When I get a frivolous bill, I like to send back one of my own

I bill hourly for having to deal with nonsense. And threaten to follow up in small claims court.

It's worked on a couple swindlers demanding payment for nothing. I never actually had to follow through, but it's kind of amusing to send a bill to people like that.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 08:08 PM

80. That buisness would be off my list

And by word of mouth, anyone I know that might travel that route would know the story.

Poor business because the lost future potential customer. I have several routes that I travel routinely and there are places that we do stop to use the facilities. We do not always buy something, but other trips we might. If one of these stops told me I couldn't use the rest room, I wouldn't stop there again and they would lose any possible future business I may have bestowed upon them.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 08:09 PM

81. I wonder why the restaurant doesn't just have tokens to get into the restroom...

...that is, if they want people to pay to use the restroom. That's how most such places work (though I've never seen one charge $5--seriously? ). To get into the restroom, the patron must go to the person behind the counter, buy the minimum (like a drink) and they get a token which, when put into the slot opens the door, like putting a coin into a gumball machine. No token, no restroom. Hence, everyone pays. Likewise, the restaurant could also forgo token and just have the bathroom slot fitted for quarter. Put in a quarter, turn the knob and you get to use the restroom. Which makes sure everyone using the toilet pays a little something to keep it clean.

Certainly cheaper and more efficient than getting the sheriff involved.

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Response to Moonwalk (Reply #81)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 11:30 PM

95. Most such places? In this country?

I've seen the bathroom key concept at gas stations, but never come across a "token" system.

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Response to Tommy_Carcetti (Reply #95)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 12:40 AM

96. I guess it's not all that common around the country then--I saw it used--

--at certain places in my city--Starbucks, some burger places--that wanted only paying customers to use the restroom.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 08:17 PM

82. was going to suggest picketing but i did a mapquest and it looks a bit too much in the middle of

nowhere
keep hearing the deliverance song is the backround..........

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Response to dembotoz (Reply #82)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 11:21 PM

93. Which makes it all the more wrong.

I mean, if it were next door to five other places whose owners weren't assholes about you using the restroom, that's another thing.

But if you are the only public place for a span of several miles and you make people pay to go to the restroom, that's price gouging in my book. No better than gas stations who double the price of gas right after a hurricane.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 08:52 PM

86. Geez lady, act like a modern adult

Mail 'em a five dollar bill and then trash the place on Yelp.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 10:23 PM

90. I quit going to TGI Fridays over a similar issue...

Back when they had a downtown Minneapolis location. My oldest daughter needed to go to the bathroom very badly. We stopped there since it was close they wouldn't let her use the restroom. I quit being a customer that day. I was so mad I could spit. I had been a fairly frequent customer. It was one of the places we went to celebrate big events.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 07:19 PM

100. When my daughter was a toddler

and we lived in the middle of nowhere, I had to drive 35 miles to buy some things at a Ben Franklin dime store. When she and I walked into the store, she said, “Mommy, potty wee wee!” I quickly asked the store clerk, a woman who’d waited on me countless times, if I could take my daughter to use the store’s restroom. My daughter kept saying, "Mommy, wee wee! Mommy, wee wee!" The clerk said, “The restroom is for employees only. Why don’t you try next door at Penneys?” I said, “But I was going to shop here, and my daughter has to go NOW.” The clerk turned her back on us, so I told my daughter to go ahead and wee wee on the floor. She did. When the clerk turned around and saw the puddle, she screamed, “What is she doing? We just put in new carpet! blah blah eek! blah blah..."” I said, “Well, you wouldn’t let us use the restroom.” Having heard the clerk screaming at me, the manager appeared, and I told him about my exchange with her. He apologized to me, but I drove another 60 miles to shop elsewhere, and I never went into the Ben Franklin store again.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 07:28 PM

102. It is an offense for an officer to give that information to a citizen.

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