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Man who sued Cub after free-samples scuffle drops suit

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A man who had sued Cub Foods after the store denied him free samples has dropped his claim, the Star Tribune reports.

The action brought to a close a case that had drawn some national attention and prompted debate about what is a socially acceptable number of freebies shoppers can gobble as they cruise the grocery aisles.

Store managers said Erwin Lingitz, 69, of Gem Lake, was a serial sampler who loaded up on more than his share of free samples at the Cub in White Bear Township, the Pioneer Press reported.

Among his offenses, according to store officials: filling his produce bags with up to 20 cookies from the "kids' cookie club tray," court documents said.

Lingitz in March 2013 had sued Cub parent Supervalu, Ramsey County, its sheriff's office, three deputies and a private security company over an April 2010 incident. Lingitz claimed he was roughed up and alleged that his civil rights were trampled by a security guard and then sheriff’s deputies after he was accused of hoarding lunch meat samples. He was arrested after the scuffle.

Lingitz had sought a minimum of $375,000 in damages stemming from civil rights violations, use of excessive force and negligence.

But Lingitz did not collect any of the cash awards he had sought in the suit, the Star Tribune reports. The parties agreed to a confidentiality clause that bars them from talking about the case and its resolution, the newspaper reports.

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