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Two Denny's diners report maggots in their breakfast

Published Sep. 16, 2005

Two Tampa men who say they were served a breakfast of maggots Saturday at a Denny's restaurant held a news conference Monday to talk about racial discrimination and "psychological trauma." Their lawyer even recreated the meal for television cameras.

The men said inch-long maggots crawled out of their eggs, across their pancakes and over their steak.

"Maggots in a restaurant _ that's as low as you can go," said Kevin Campbell, a musical engineer.

Attorney Manny Machin said Campbell, 23, and Kenny Andrews, 21, "suffered embarrassment and humiliation" but said he will investigate further before filing a lawsuit.

"The next hamburger, the next bowl of rice, the next rice pudding, they'll be checking," he said.

Joe Stych, the restaurant's manager, did not return calls on Monday. Debbie Atkins, a spokeswoman for the chain, said, "I would assure you that Denny's is committed to serving the highest quality food in a safe and clean environment."

Campbell and Andrews said they were asked to leave the restaurant at 5603 E. Hillsborough Ave. or face arrest. Machin said he believes the restaurant treated his clients differently because they are black.

"Denny's has a history of not making good judgment calls with African-Americans," he said, referring to past complaints of bias at Denny's restaurants.