The family of a teenager who Pittsburgh Steelers star Sean Davis filmed working at a Chik-fil-A and then ridiculed on social media, is suing the player because they say the boy was bullied at school due to the posts.
The 24-year-old Steeler took the video of the youngster working with his family at the fast food restaurant’s drive-thru in Cranberry Township, Pennsylvania. Davis was apparently upset that his order took too long to arrive, and posted the video of the worker to ridicule the outlet’s wait time.
“Chick-fil-A got little kids. This kid like eight years old. No wonder the lines be so long at Chick-fil-A,” Davis said on the video, the Pittsburgh Post Gazette reported.
The lawsuit claims Davis libeled the boy and also charges cyberbullying, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and slander. The family says that Davis posted his video to Snapchat on either Dec. 11 or Dec. 13.
The family also accused the player of misrepresenting the worker’s age. The lawsuit claims that their son is “very small for his age, regarding his small stature and youthful appearance.”
The family further alleges that the video “incorporated an emoji of a face laughing until tears were flowing out of its eyes, representing how funny looking he thought minor-plaintiff was.”
The family, which is going unnamed in public, said that the teen was bullied at school as a direct result of the players ridicule on the video.
The family’s attorney insisted that the boy “has been hurt and injured in his good name and reputation,” and “exposed to public hatred, contempt, and ridicule.”
“He got abused in school for a few weeks” over the video, Attorney Andrew Leger said on February 26.
Leger also claims that the family tried “mightily” to get Davis to settle the case out of court. Though, no agreement was reached between the parties.
For his part, Davis’ attorney strongly disputes the family’s claims saying that such bullying “goes completely against everything Sean stands for and how he lives his life.”
Davis’ representative added that the allegations are untrue, so no settlement was warranted. “From our viewpoint, this wasn’t bullying. It wasn’t cyber-bullying,” Eugene Lee said in response to the lawsuit.
Lee went on to call the lawsuit “frivolous.”
“At the heart of all these alleged claims is intent. There was absolutely no intent on Sean’s part to single him out or to demean this young man,” Lee exclaimed.
The player’s representative concluded that the video was not meant to single out the employee individually, only to complain about how long it took to get served.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.