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War Hero Sues KFC

They REFUSED to Serve Me

'Cause of My Service Dog

8/21/2013 11:00 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

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An American war hero is suing the company behind Kentucky Fried Chicken ... claiming KFC  employees refused to serve him ... all because he arrived to the fast food joint with his registered service dog, this according to a new lawsuit obtained by TMZ.

The man behind the lawsuit is Charles Hernandez -- who describes himself as a "highly-decorated  and combat-disabled veteran of the Iraq war and a distinguished educator in the New York City school system."

There's more ... he was also New York City Council's Veteran of the Year in 2011 ... and was also "one of the first soldiers to arrive at the World Trade Center site" on September 11, 2001.

So, you'd think the guy would have no problems getting some fried chicken at his leisure, right?

Wrong, according to his new lawsuit filed in NYC.

Hernandez claims he walked into a KFC in NY back in February, along with his registered service dog Valor ... who accompanies Hernandez to soothe his symptoms of post-traumatic stress caused by years in combat.

But instead of being greeted with a smile and some chicken, Hernandez claims a KFC employee told him, "papi, there are no dogs allowed."

Hernandez says he explained that he had the proper permits to have the dog accompany him inside restaurants -- to which the employee replied, "ok, but you still cannot have the dog in the store."

Eventually, Hernandez left ... sans chicken ... and is now firing back with the lawsuit -- demanding at least $1,000,000 for his troubles.

God bless America.

An employee at the KFC restaurant where the incident took place tells us ... when Hernandez arrived with the dog, the animal was not wearing the proper service dog vest and identification.

However, in his lawsuit, Hernandez states -- "Valor wears a bright green vest and tags that clearly indicate that he is not a pet, but rather a highly trained service dog."

Sgt. Hernandez called into TMZ Live today to talk about the suit.

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263 COMMENTS

No Avatar
46.

Dead account Delete at will    

Hey ever see the signs
Right to refuse service to ANYONE!!!!

371 days ago
47.

A    

As a service dog user myself I have to comment on this. First of all by federal law he is allowed to take his service dog anywhere he goes. Second, the dog is not required to wear ANY kind of ID or vest, although most service dogs do wear them to clear up confusion. And third, good for him for standing up for himself!

371 days ago
48.

Obamais still aracist    

I dont know what he needs a dog for but i am sick of everyone and their mother of needing a service dog, buck up and stop being a little btch

371 days ago
49.

joan    

In Colorado once a person says that the dog is a service dog, no more questions can be asked and the dog stays!

371 days ago
50.

PictureUp    

security camera footage will show if the dog was wearing his " service dog vest" as stated or prove this guy is as greasy as that processed crap KFC passes off as chicken!!

371 days ago
51.

Diana     

I think most Low-info poster on this site are thinking that this is a trained dog who is equiped to assist a person in everyday chores. If you do a lil research you will find that this is a former military canine trained to search , guard and attack on command.in a war zone. Organizations rescue former military canine and place them under the care of veterans. This dog was not neccessary to be in a restaurant for the ordering of food. This sounds like a vet who is trying to really work the system. How sad.

371 days ago
52.

Leopold butters Stotch     

KFC isn't real chicken anyways.

371 days ago
53.

kitnplayn    

The clerk called him "Papi". That's pretty ignorant...should be worth about two million just for that.

371 days ago
54.

b003    

Drive thru closed? Seriously, too many people abuse that.

371 days ago
55.

Bravo600    

I can go either way on this – won’t know until the facts are in. A lot depends on if the dog was really wearing his vest. If Mr. Hernandez donates the money to educating people about service dogs, he will remain a hero in my eyes; if he pockets the money – not so much. Companion dogs are different from service dogs in how they are treated under the law (check the ADA). To expect the general public to know all this is a bit much – as is a million dollars for an inconvenience.

371 days ago
56.

Nobody.Puts.Bieber.In.A.Corner    

I SWEAR TO GOD that some of you have to be the stupidest people on the GD planet.

371 days ago
57.

Kangadrew    

i hope he gets the million

371 days ago
58.

Papichulo168    

Right. But one million dollars?

371 days ago
59.

cbths1    

As a disabled Veteran myself I feel badly for the gentleman. But come on, let this one go and move on. You've been though so much, is this really picking the right battle? I agree you are owed an apology and I think they should dispatch that your way ASAP. But a million dollar lawsuit? Don't soil your service and your accomplishments like this. I do, however, offer my respect and "Thank You" for your service to our country and wish you nothing but the best in the future! It would appear you are more than equipped to handle anything thrown your way.

371 days ago
60.

en Todo Momento!!    

sorry dude, but i would have straight up sold my dog to the next passer by for some kfc. if you get between me and my fried chicken, you just got to go. at least he didn't call 9-11 like all the other crazies! "gi' me mah friedd chickcen!!"

371 days ago
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