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Applebee's may have found source of fingertip

By David Twiddy

Associated Press

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Applebee's International Inc. says an internal investigation has discovered that a former employee at a Jefferson, La., restaurant cut the tip off his thumb a year ago and that likely is the fingertip found by a customer now suing the restaurant chain.

May Deal Chambers Johnson of Jefferson Parish claims she found a fingertip in a salad she bought at the restaurant a year ago. She filed suit against the Overland Park, Kan.-based chain.

In a statement Saturday, Applebee's said "while some facts are still unclear, we now believe a former employee at this restaurant accidentally cut the very tip of his thumb last year." The company said the man described the cut as "roughly the size of a sunflower seed."

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In its statement, Applebee's said it wanted to apologize to Johnson.

"We deeply regret this isolated incident from last year," the statement said. "Food safety remains our top priority."

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