According to the St. Louis Post Dispatch, Starbucks has been sued by a Missouri family after their loved one tried to thwart a tip jar robbery and ended up dead.

Roger Kreutz was ordering coffee in a Crestwood Starbucks on March 3rd, 2008 when Aaron Poisson, who was 19 years old, grabbed the tip jar from the counter and ran.  Kreutz chased him to his car where a physical altercation ensued.  Poisson got in his car and stuck Kreutz with the vehicle while trying to make his escape.  Kreutz later died from his injuries.

Poisson, of Cumming, Ga., was later arrested in St. Louis, and pleaded guilty of involuntary manslaughter.  He was sentenced to one year in prison,the  St. Louis Post Dispatch reported.

Kreutz’ family has filed a wrongful-death lawsuit against Starbucks, blaming them for inviting criminal activity by leaving tip jars near customers. According to the lawsuit, obtained by the St. Louis Post Dispatch, Starbucks “did not employ security to prevent the perpetration of such crimes” and that it “invited the act of perpetration of said crime” by having a tip jar.

Starbucks did not comment to the Dispatch regarding the lawsuit.

21 thoughts on “Starbucks Sued Over Tip Jar

  1. Wow, that is devastating. Not sure about the law suit, but my thoughts go out to the family who lost their son.

  2. Two words. PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY. Mr. Kreutz’s family needs to understand that he (Roger Kreutz) and he ALONE made the decision to run after the thief for the tip jar. Something I think every one will agree was not worth him losing his life over, but it was HIS decision and none of us will ever know why HE made it. Starbucks cannot be held responsible for HIS (Roger Kreutz’s) actions.

    I understand they are grieving, but if he truly wanted to help the store and it’s employees he could have safely gone into the parking lot and gotten a license plate number and assisted the police that way as well as given as description of the thief. Blaming a corporation for the actions of their loved one and attempting to gain a monetary profit from his death is an injustice to his memory and the “Good Samaritan” attitude he tried to share the day he died.

  3. These people make me sick with their stupidity. Having a tip jar invites criminal activity? what about the coffee, or the coffeemakers on the shelves in boxes that are probly $200 each. I think it would be just as easy to grab one of those. I hope the judge throws it out.

    Of course I feel bad for the death. But that is no excuse for stupidity.

  4. Personal responsibility is right…he made the decision. This has nothing to do with starbucks.

  5. Generally, I agree with the above posters. Tip jars are common practice for service industry establishments. This is a case of an individual acting inappropriately, and the suit by the family against the business is altogether invalid, though I certainly sympathize that they’ve suffered a tragic loss.

  6. I just really can’t believe this. Having been in this business for so long, with very little surprising me, this just takes the cake.


  7. A tragic story for sure. One year hardly seems like an appropriate time for taking a life, even if it was unintentional. I don’t see how you justify going after Starbucks and a tip jar. They didn’t cause the kid to die.

  8. I am very sorry for his death – it is a tragedy. However, I have to agree with John and Jon. He made the choice to run after the thief. In retrospect, not such a good idea. And if the tip jar wasn’t there, he would have gone for something else, if he was desperate enough.

  9. Oh for crap’s sake. Money grab, plain and simple. Suing over something like this makes a mockery out of their loved one’s sacrifice. These people should be ashamed of themselves.

  10. The entire story is sad. Hopefully a judge with some common sense will throw this silly suit out quickly. Stories like this have confirmed to me to never stop a thief when they’re taking money, it’s only money and most of the time it’s just a few bucks.

  11. Wow ?! Having a tip jar = invites criminal activity ? well, how bout having a luxurious car parked in the road ?

  12. This is a shame 🙁

    The family shouldn’t be suing Starbucks; they should be morning the death of their loved one.

    Oh, and the robber only got a year for this? Really?

  13. Starbucks can afford a payout to the family who lost their loved one. They have to pay for a funeral and deal with their loss forever. Yes, it was the kid’s decision but it’s true, if not for the accessibility (remove-ability, more importantly) of the tip jar and lack of security the kid would still be alive.

  14. Health benefits of coffee.
    1 Drinking coffee on a regular basis. Preventing hepatitis B research has shown. The coffee is useful in preventing disease.

    2 Drinking coffee on a regular basis. They help prevent asthma, allergies, this is one. In general, if a backup does not stimulate the nerves. Pant does not happen easily. If the secondary sensory stimulation. The asthma symptoms immediately. The caffeine in coffee preserve a sense of tension. Reduce the incidence of asthma.

    3 Drinking coffee on a regular basis. Reduce the incidence of alcoholic liver disease. The researchers found that the survey. Coffee reduces the negative effects on the liver. But that also requires further research. Of these benefits. And to other causes that can cause cirrhosis or not. In addition to alcohol.

    4 drinking coffee on a regular basis. They help prevent liver cancer, colon cancer and oral cancer. The results of real coffee have found early-stage disease. In particular, caffeine and acetic acid. This helps to prevent illness.

    5 Drinking coffee on a regular basis. Ward off aging. Oxygen is a substance that the body actually needs. But if there is more oxygen. The possibility of early cancer and advanced. The coffee concentrate. Oxide breakdown. Reduce the risk of cancer. It stimulates the body’s metabolism.

    6 Drinking coffee on a regular basis. The coffee helps reduce the amount of the neck – was. Heart disease. Coffee contains nicotine. But not the same kind of cigarettes. The B vitamins, including a need in the body. Reduce blood cholesterol. Prevents heart disease. And the blood to clot.

    7 Drinking coffee on a regular basis. It helps to melt the fat. Coffee, eat a full meal. Helps break down fat. And renewable energy, so fat.

    8 The coffee increases the body fat. Preventing blood clots. The results showed that people who drink coffee frequently. The fat (HDL) cholesterol and fats in order to sell it. Preventing blood clots.

    9 Drinking coffee on a regular basis. Help solve the headache. Coffee contains caffeine, which dilates blood vessels. Analgesics and pain. It is also a diuretic. Melt the fat in the blood. It helps to relieve headaches. Drunkenness.

    10 Drinking coffee on a regular basis. Improves blood flow to the brain and brain dysfunction. This is a summary of research on this subject. The aroma of coffee stimulates the brain to work faster and concentrate better performance. This is because the smell of coffee. Increased blood flow to the brain.

    11 Drinking coffee causes a secretion of gastric juices in the stomach break the fat, if you will, after drinking a bit ‘of caffeine in coffee directly positively to eat in the stomach. The stomach and pancreas, increased appetite. The metabolism of fats.

  15. Dunno if I should laugh or cry…This is a miserable consequence of poor education leading to robbery which lead, eventually to a someone’s death. Invest in teaching youth right and wrong…I think Starbucks was just “there”, lawsuit has no case here.

  16. The fact that he left the store to pursue the thief says enough. Kreutz pursued the individual out of his own free will without being asked to do so. Not to mention you would need to prove a direct link between Starbucks and the thief running Kreutz over. The surviving family is just throwing money away with this stupid lawsuit.


  17. I disagree with Andrea, his death had nothing to do with the stupid tip jar. It had to do with reckless driving (and his act of heroism which is very honorable). What brand of car did the thief drive? They should be sued, heck we should sue all the car companies because they kill so many people (this is sarcasm by the way). And, you canNOT mess with fate. If it’s your time to go, it is your time to go. There is a reason for everything. This country is way too notorious for suing over stupid crap and this just adds to it. Thanks for making the U.S. look like idiots. Maybe we should have tip jars become illegal?? Yeah, that would solve lifes problems.

  18. I’m truly sorry for their loss, but disgusted by their greed and exploitation of the event. They should be ashamed.

  19. Starbucks Sued Over Tip Jar: The coffee is useful in preventing disease. It helps to melt the fat.Improves blood flow to the brain and brain dysfunction.

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