A woman who claims Chipotle used a 2006 photo of her in an advertisement without her permission is suing the restaurant chain for just over $2.2 billion, which represents all of the company’s profits since the photo was taken.
The Sacramento Bee reports the photo was taken in 2006 as Leah Caldwell ate at a Chipotle near the University of Denver. According to the lawsuit, Caldwell was approached by a photographer as she left the restaurant and asked to sign a release form, which she refused to do.
Eight years later, Caldwell says she walked into Chipotle in Orlando, Fla. and recognized a photo of herself on the wall; a few months later she claims she spotted the photo in Sacramento and Rosevill. According to her lawsuit, the photo was first used in 2006.
Caldwell has issues beyond the photo being used without her permission; she also claims the company, or the photographer, by editing in people and objects, including bottles of alcohol, that were not in the original photo.
Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc., photographer Steve Adams, and Chipotle Chief Executive Officer Steve Ells were all named in the suit, which was filed in U.S. District Court in Sacramento on Dec. 20.
Caldwell should probably meet with the guys who sued Chipotle because they felt too full.