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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- A woman who says she found a human tooth in a can of Campbell's soup has filed a lawsuit against the company.
Tina Keeney, of West Jordan, had just heated up a can of chicken noodle soup and given some of it to her 13-month-old son.
While she was cleaning up, she noticed the boy had a hard, white object in his hand.
"It's gross enough as it is to find something in your food anyway, but to have it be a human tooth that was in someone else's mouth is just sickening," Keeney said.
She called Campbell Soup Co. headquarters in Camden, New Jersey to complain. Keeney said the person she spoke to was polite, if a little skeptical, asking if the object could actually be a chicken bone.
"I said, 'I'm not a dentist, but it looks like a molar to me," she said.
Campbell Soup Co. offered to cover the cost of the soup -- plus a little extra. They also wanted her to mail in the tooth.
Keeney went to a lawyer instead.
Since that July afternoon last year, attorney Daniel Irvin has had the object tested by a pathologist, who confirmed it is indeed a human molar, likely from a 13-year-old mouth. The expert noted the tooth, actually half a tooth, appeared to have been cut in some kind of manufacturing process, Irvin said.
Additional tests ruled out that the tooth belonged to anyone in the Keeney family, including her older daughters.
Irvin said he has spoken numerous times to officials at Campbell Soup Co. about settling the matter. They were unable to reach an agreement, and Irvin this week filed a civil lawsuit against the company in Utah's 3rd District Court.
The suit asks for unspecified damages on behalf of Keeney and her son.
"Here's a woman who can't eat soup, her family can't eat soup. And to be honest with you, I haven't eaten soup since this happened," Irvin said.
A spokesman for Campbell Soup Co. said it has not been allowed to examine the object Keeney says she found in the soup, but he offered no additional comment.
"I can't comment about pending litigation," spokesman John Faulkner said Thursday.
(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)