One evening Racquel and Kristie Ferrell went to dinner at Ruby Tuesday. They paid their bill, left the restaurant, got into their car, and drove on to the highway. While driving along the highway, they noticed that they were being followed by a truck with its high beams on. They switched lanes and so did the truck. One of the two police cars that was parked along the side of the road on the highway pulled out behind the girls and pulled them over. The other police car followed. The truck driver also stopped and told police that the girls had not paid their bill at Ruby Tuesday and that the manager sent him ( an off- duty police officer acting as a security at Ruby Tuesday) after them. Each girl was then placed in the back of the police car and handcuffed.
A further investigation determined that the manager of the restaurant had assumed it was Racquel and Kristie who left without paying on advice of the waiter who indicted them. It just so happened that the girls were leaving the restaurant at the time the waiter reported the no pay incident to the manager. The manager then told the security guard to follow the girls without any attempt to verify the authenticity of who actually left without paying. The Ferrell’s sued the restaurant based on a claim of an illegal detention. During the trial, it was firmly established that the girls were detained.
The question is do the Ferrell’s have a legitimate claim of illegal detention against the manager of the restaurant?