Margarita Sciapin was living a nightmare in South Florida when she heard chatter around her that she was the culprit behind a bakery theft. The rumor got so bad that her 12-year-old daughter was harassed by other children in a gym club.
In a lawsuit, Sciapin explained her confusion around the rapidly spreading rumors and that she couldn’t find the person who was spreading the false story.
As her frustrations began to grow, she entered Paris Morning Bakery in Boca Raton and found posters of her face plastered on the walls. She was a wanted fugitive and the bold letters labelled her as a “CAKE THIEF!”
“This Karen thief stole a cake from us at 5 p.m. on January 22, 2023,” one poster stated. “When an employee tried to explain that our refunds don’t show up in statements immediately, she got angry, refused to believe the employee, took the cake, and left while her cake was already refunded. She was very impatient when the employee was trying to figure out how to do a refund receipt, instead of waiting, she ran off with the cake.”
The reason behind the unwanted fame is a previous fight over a mocha-flavored confectionery. Sciapin bought a mocha cake for $29 but then realized the employee had given her the wrong product. She said the worker wasn’t able to swap the order and recommended a refund then charging her again for the desired cake.
In fear of getting charged twice, Sciapin decided to keep the original cake and told the staff to avoid the trouble of swapping it.
It wasn’t a sweet memory; the battle brought on stress and anxiety that resulted in her getting hospitalized for shortness of breath and elevated heart rate the next day.
Sciapin is suing Paris Morning for the emotional turmoil caused by their posters. The flyers shattered her reputation and caused her family’s jewelry business to suffer a downfall in revenue.
“The defendant, through its employees, allowed the publication of false and defamatory written statements about the plaintiff, framing her as a thief to be knowingly and purposely published by the defendant’s employee in its shop window,” the lawsuit stated.
The staff had left out a receipt revealing her full name, her credit card information, and a public notice about the woman.
According to the staff, the woman got the refund and the cake. An employee explained” “She didn’t see the refund on her credit card and said she was just going to take the cake. If she would have waited for two minutes for the employee to text me, to figure out how to print a refund receipt, she would have gotten it. But she was rushing the employee and not being patient, not being very understanding.”
The bakery employees confirmed that the posters had been removed from the public areas.
“They’re not really for customers to see anymore,” one employee said. “I hope she can be at peace with it or something.”