McDonald's Owner Wants Out of Naked Photos Suit

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) - The owner of a McDonald's franchise in northwest Arkansas wants out of a lawsuit alleging employees posted nude photographs on the Internet from a cellular phone lost there.

Mathews Management Company wrote in a court filing that even if the allegations by Phillip and Tina Sherman of Bella Vista were true, the alleged conduct by its employees would be outside the scope of their employment and the company would not be liable for those acts. The company also contends it owed no legal duty to protect the Shermans.

The motion asks that the company, which owns several McDonald's restaurants in the area, be dismissed from the suit.

The lawsuit by the Shermans claims that Phillip Sherman lost his phone at the Fayetteville restaurant on July 5. The phone contained nude photographs his wife sent him. Though employees promised to secure the phone until Phillip Sherman returned, his wife began receiving text messages from it, the suit claims.

The photographs later made their way to a Web site. The lawsuit asks for more than $3 million in damages from McDonald's Corp., Mathews Management and Aaron Brummley, a manager of the restaurant. The suit also asks for money to cover the cost for having to move to a new residence.