$54 Million Pants Case Back In Court

Roy “Fancypants” Pearson, the ex-judge who sued a dry-cleaner for $54 million over a misplaced pair of pants, that the cleaner even offered to replace, is continuing to press his case. He lost his original suit, he lost his job, now a court has agreed to hear his appeal. This man gets the award for worst…consumer…ever. Video inside.

$54 Million ‘Pants’ Lawsuit Headed Back to Court [ABC7] (Thanks to coloradoshark!)
Catch up on the story by checking out these previous posts.


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  1. Mayor McRib says:

    What could there be left to appeal? I hope he is forced to pay for all the time he’s wasting in the courts. As a former judge, he should know this better than anyone. I hope he loses more than his pants after dragging down the already burdened legal system.

  2. nicemarmot617 says:

    Will someone please put this guy out of his misery. I mean, I don’t advocate assassination, but what a worthless piece of sewage this guy is. I guess I can only hope something bad happens to pay him back for all the pain he’s caused other people.

    • @nicemarmot617: Like he gets caught under an avalanche of pants while at a store?

    • dveight says:

      This is a prime example of there being a need for a “common sense” rule for lawsuits. Like the family of the robber who shot a guy at a bar that he was robbing. The guy who was shot was able to then kill the robber, and the family of the robber was sueing the owner of the bar because the freaking robber was not provided adequte protection. It’s also another example of why the U.S. is becoming the laughing stock of the world.

      @nicemarmot617: Not into assassinations? How about an “accident”

      • mythago says:

        @dveight: did that actually happen, or did that come off some Chamber of Commerce puppet site like Overlawyered?

        There are ‘common sense’ rules, however, I really don’t think you’d want there to be a rule that says if the judge doesn’t like you, he or she can ignore the law and dismiss your case.

      • tmed says:


        Pull down some case history on that case (robber v. homeowner who shot him – robber wins). I don’t believe it exists. There is an electrocution case of similar circumstance. And with what i know, I don’t support the family getting $75k.

        There is a massive “common sense” rule in lawsuits. It is hard as hell to convince a jury of real wrong, even when there has been real wrong. People go after money, and media face time, but they don’t win very often. This guy is really good at getting his case heard, probably because of his experience as a lawyer / judge. But he has lost and will lose again. The legal fees for the defendants suck, but there is no system better than this.

        Consumers have to have legal protection for the wrongs that are brought upon them. If the case has undeniable merit, it will be settled, ONLY BECAUSE OF THE PENDING LAWSUIT.

        Rather than belittle the system realize it is the protection of these idiots that helps protects all of the legitimate cases we read about here. I would much rather have illegitiamate lawsuits sneak trhough sometimes than see people powerless to fight.

  3. Keep talking...I'm listening says:

    It’s obvious that he is nothing more than a media whore. I wish we could just ignore people like this.

  4. consumer-warrior says:

    I know you don’t like foul language but I gotta say “What the fuck?”. Is our court system so screwed up that they would even consider this appeal? I am indeed ashamed that this would even be considered.

    • outphase says:

      @consumer-warrior: Appeals are made on errors of law. Maybe he found a piece of evidence improperly included/excluded.

      I’d love to read the court’s opinion on this one.

    • Farquar says:


      In some states litigants have an appeal as of right. Not sure what the rule is where he is. VA does NOT have appeal as of right, but I’m not sure about MD or DC.

      Aside from that the grant of appeals have nothing to do with the evidence or the ‘worthiness’ of the cause. It’s only “did the trial judge screw something up”. While the judge may have rightly dismissed, he still needs to have done it the correct way. The system only works if the trial judges do what they are supposed to. The appellate courts ensure that they do.

  5. Xerloq says:

    I think the guy’s going about it all wrong. He needs to make it a class action suit and be the representation. I’m sure all the bottomless judges wandering around out there because of Big Cleaning would be happy to join and probably make a more sympathetic group. Perhaps he’d win.

    Don’t forget to tie in Big Cleaning’s connections to Global Warming, child labor, and promoting public lewdness. /sarcasm

  6. theysaidwhat says:

    It was a mistake to give this idiot more publicity.

  7. Zimorodok says:

    Look, let’s be honest here…

    Judges don’t wear pants under those robes.

  8. laserjobs says:

    I thought we were not allowed to blame the conusmer?

  9. brainswarm says:

    Maybe these were NASA designed heat-resistant astronaut pants, and $54 million is how much the pants actually cost.

  10. sprocket79 says:

    This guy is such a tool. I wonder if he has some sort of mental problem where he’s compelled to keep going. Or, he could just be on a quest to be the most hated man in the world — he’d have my vote.

  11. liesandslander says:

    Seriously now.
    i would like to just see the 3 judges sitting on this case to stand up at the end, and say “you sir, can eat a dick” and when he brings it in front of the entire panel of judges, they just stand up at the begining of the trial, and say that again, because this guy is just a media glutton.

    than again, maybe we should team him up with Jack Thomson….

  12. chiieddy says:

    This guy reminds me of Jack Thompson. I’m not sure how, but he does.

    Oh, maybe it’s the crazy.

  13. The plaintiff obviously has a psychological problem.

    • theblackdog says:

      @twophrasebark: Oh he does, it was reported that he started crying while being questioned on the witness stand.

      Hasn’t this guy done enough damage? Not only does he look like an idiot and he lost his job over his bizzare behavior in filing the lawsuit and his manners in court, but the dry cleaners in question were forced to close their business because of the unwanted attention he brought on them.

      Who here thinks this might deserve the “bad consumer” tag?

  14. EricLecarde says:

    So, this guy has the option if they rule against him to seek another appeal where all the judges get to tell him no? I wonder if I can sue him for wasting tax payer dollars on frivolous cases like this.

  15. bagumpity says:

    Has nobody ordered a psych evaluation on this guy? Seriously, behavior like this is a sign of something wrong. It’s fun to call him a nut-job and such, but at some point you have to ask whether or not there’s a real pathology involved.

  16. jimmypopjr says:

    I can’t imagine this guy expects to win anything, I would guess all he wants to do is cause damage to their business, which he has succeeded in doing so far.

    Doesn’t make the guy any less of a dick, though.

    • Darkwing_Duck says:

      @jimmypopjr: Well, I guess he figures he has nothing left to lose. Lost his job, his suit-both in court and…nevermind. Bitter, humiliated, and he still has the right to appeal. This is the fallen man’s last stand, which he will lose, and finally disappear into obscurity and hopefully misery

    • ChrisNF says:

      @jimmypopjr: Do you think he caused damage to their business? Yes, their first store is gone, but they are up and running again, and I for one would go to them specifically because they stood up to this guy. It seems they have a lot of support. The article says they managed to raise funds for their legal defense. I’m not saying this is a case of “all press is good press” because I’m sure it’s painful for them.

  17. sjkang says:

    Seriously? This guy must have something against Koreans or something. This is obviously the actions of a clearly racist individual who just wants to cause problems for a successful imigrant family.

    • @sjkang: Yeah, thats it, racism is always to blame.

      This is example 1,304,415 why we need loser pay rules in this country

      • Nytmare says:

        @TracyHamandEggs!: You know perfectly well why “loser pays” isn’t feasible, so I’m really tired of you bringing it up.

        • @nytmare: Oh, I’m sorry I brought up a valid, often debated, legal principle that could have stopped this travesty from going forward. One that happens to be the rule of law in Canada and has really limited lawsuit abuse.

          @Farquar: The only way he has taken advantage is that by being a lawyer he can do all this for free, while the people who he sued had to hire (and pay) an attorney. You see this quite often in some of the more outrageous lawsuits (the NY flower suit) Often this results in settlements when they aren’t deserved, if only to avoid the cost of litigation. Sadly, I can’t think of a way to avoid this. The same thing should apply for people people sued by major corporations, its completely unfair for poor Joe Shmoe to have to lay out thousands to reply to a suit from the RIAA.

          • Farquar says:

            @TracyHamandEggs!: That’s not taking advantage of the system.

            CPA’s can do their own taxes. Mechanics can fix their own cars. Veterinarians can dispense their magical healing powers on their own dogs. Lawyers can resolve their own legal issues.
            Just because this one instance involves an idiot doesn’t in turn mean he’s taking advantage of the system. He’s just an idiot that happens to be a lawyer.

          • mythago says:

            @TracyHamandEggs!: Actually, in the US, the loser in a lawsuit can (in certain circumstances) be liable for the other side’s legal costs. The idea that a pure ‘loser pays’ rule really works is pushed only by those who believe corporations should never ever be sued.

          • Hyman Decent says:

            @bria: Are my eyes deceiving me? Is your comment bigoted? Shouldn’t it have been disemvoweled?

        • kingmanic says:

          “You know perfectly well why “loser pays” isn’t feasible, so I’m really tired of you bringing it up. “

          Because it works in so many other jurisdictions? Like Canada?

          • Farquar says:

            @kingmanic: Just because they have it somewhere doesn’t mean it works.

            “They do it in Canada” doesn’t mean anything except “They do it in Canada.”

            There needs to be more to your argument than that.

          • kingmanic says:

            @Farquar: I live in Canada I work IT in a public legal education institution. It works here. Big companies aren’t rampantly violating the rights of people, loser pays does stifle the number of frivolous and possibly some legitimate lawsuits. How exactly will it fail? It hasn’t chilled legitimate lawsuits in Canada. Canadians enjoy as much or more liberty then Americans. Canada is just as stable and almost as wealthy.

            Predatory tactics with lawsuits are more of a Canadian thing. Here the judges have more leeway to smack down plaintiffs if it seems they are simply stretching out the trial.

            • kingmanic says:

              @kingmanic: “Predatory tactics with lawsuits are more of a Canadian thing? Here the judges have more leeway to smack down plaintiffs if it seems they are simply stretching out the trial.”

              The question mark is important.

            • mythago says:

              @kingmanic: I realize Canadians are kinda belligerent about how much better they are than Americans in every way, but the “English rule” – aka loser pays – is not magically superior to the American system. (Interesting article here.) And loser-pays means nothing when the plaintiff is a crazy person representing himself, particularly if he is judgment-proof.

              • ChrisNF says:

                @mythago: Maybe the thinly veiled anti-Canadian racism can be kept off this board? And we Canadians will try not to be belligerent about our superiority?

  18. Techno Viking says:

    I am simply amazed at how this idiot is using the system to be basically a bully and still demand the 54 mil for the pants. Here is an idea. If it was up to me I would do it in a heart beat. I would abduct him, and sorry for the language but I would fucking send him to Haiti where a storm is forcing people to flee, or drop him off in Somalia and let’s see how long he will survive there on his own due to constant fighting between many drug lords and bastards for the land, money, you name it. People are fleeing that place, being forced to jump from the boat on gun point and some did die as the news reported. This man deserves no sympathy for his mental breakdown, his defense team needs to be shot along with him, and the judges who want to see this case again and listen to what he has to say, must be shot as well. Why is this being allowed. I think someone higher than a judge should step in, put him into a mental institution for life, and deny him his constitutional right to sue people fro such amounts, and basically put him to work for 1 dollar a day here in America and let’s see how long he will live on our pity on him. One more thing, why can’t someone on earth just beat the crap out of him? You know put him into a hospital for a while. Then, beat him again if he files another suit.

  19. post_break says:

    They should make him do community service, in a dry cleaners.

  20. kingmanic says:

    Are they giving out awards for biggest douche bag of the year? I think this fellow deserves it.

  21. danman81 says:

    i say we all just pitch in and get this guy the pile of golden poop trophy. who’s in?

  22. Doofio says:

    And people wonder why our legal system is mocked across the globe. It’s not about who’s right or who’s wrong, it’s about who knows more loopholes.

    • Farquar says:

      @Doofio: You have a citation for this?

      1. We aren’t ‘mocked’ across the globe. You would like to think so because it works for your bias.

      2. This case has nothing to do with loopholes. He correctly lost in the trial court. His appeal likely has nothing to do with the merits of the case. This is a good thing. As screwed up as you think the system is appeals were based on the merits of the underlying case, as opposed to law and procedure, the system would be far more innefficient and abused then it is already.

  23. EricLecarde says:

    I got to doing some more research on this guy. Apparently, during his divorce, the courts fined him 12k for “creating unnecessary litigation and threatening both Rhonda VanLowe and her lawyer with disbarment.”

    The guy broke down in tears over the pants. Over pants. This guy needs an evaulation of the psychiatric kind. That or he’s recieving advice from J.T., which still warrants a psychiatric eval.

  24. handyr says:

    I had a pair of pants I really loved too.

  25. laserjobs says:

    Where is Jesse Jackson while this is all going down?

  26. Anonymous says:

    i bet that the new judge owes him a favor ;)

  27. bria says:

    Accept the replacement for another pair of pants. You are entitled to nothing more, you twit.

  28. Scoobatz says:

    I really wish I hadn’t stumbled across this article. Now, my day is ruined. The continuation of this never-ending saga is infuriating. I feel truly sorry for the owners of the dry cleaners who are on the verge of losing everything simply due to the persistance of an ego-driven attorney who is clearly taking advantage of his power and knowledge of our (broken and misintended) criminal justice system. And, it is reprehensible that a court has agreed to hear his appeal.

    • Farquar says:

      @Scoobatz: Why has this ruined your day? It doesn’t affect you in any way. You should seek help.

      Further, I still don’t understand how this guy taken advantage of his ‘power’ and somehow abused the criminal justice system. First, its not criminal, its civil. Second, he didn’t take advantage of anything. It would be taking advantage if he somehow was able to succeed in winning against the dry cleaners based on something other than the merits. He clearly hasn’t done that. He has lost. All he has done is cost himself money. That doesn’t seem to me to be taking advantage of his power.

      Lets not forget that this guy is not powerful attorney. He’s an administrative law judge. Consider the judge that does speeding tickets in district court. Now subtract.. A lot. Not that very smart and competent attorneys aren’t administrative law judges.. But just because you are an ALJ doesn’t mean you are a good lawyer.

      When you go to your law school reunion and say that you are an ALJ none of your classmates say “Oh, Wow, that’s hot!”

  29. marsneedsrabbits says:

    “Those are prescription pants!”

    Srsly: Can’t the judge look at his history of clear abuse of the legal system (this case, the previous pants case, the case involving his divorce) and enjoin him from filing new lawsuits?

    • gmoney says:

      @marsneedsrabbits: I was thinking the same thing, basically can’t the defendant’s attorney seek a mental evaluation? But ultimately if the court decides the case has sufficient merit to proceed, it doesn’t matter.

  30. Pandrogas says:

    Must have been a really boring day at the courthouse for them to entertain this guy and what has to be one of the most inept civil suits I’ve ever seen.

  31. Jesus, this man’s out of control.

  32. Tonguetied says:

    Everything I’ve heard about loser pays makes is seem like a slam dunk to me as something that would clear up a lot of problems with our legal system.

  33. Overheal says:

    Maybe he’s appealing his damaged reputation…. you know, the one that he damaged himself.

  34. azntg says:

    After this appeal farce is over, can somebody please strip him of his US Citizenship and banish him to another country that desperately needs to increase their population?

    Seriously, some guys really like to bring shame upon our country and make a complete mockery of whatever’s left of our justice system.

  35. SOhp101 says:

    While this may be a lot more headache for the defendants, this can be an opportunity for a higher court ruling that will effectively stamp out these frivolous lawsuits and benefit more people.

    Usually appellate courts severely limit the amount of new evidence allowed and they usually prefer to stand on the previous ruling. The appellate judge likely only agreed to hear it so the ruling will apply not only to the lower court’s jurisdiction but the higher court’s as well. This in the end can only help small businesses in an even larger area.

  36. katylostherart says:

    can i have this guy’s email address? i want to ask him why he’s such a ridiculous asshole.

  37. starrion says:

    He may have mental health issues.

  38. bria says:


  39. tmed says:

    Loser Pays: Consumers lose more power! If one side has lots of money, they can run up the expenses to bankrupt the plantiff. No way that works except to suck power away from people who need it.

    This is one lawsuit, it is not representative, it is an anomoly. That’s why it’s such big news. It is really hard to get any award out of anyone.


    McDonald’s Coffee lawsuit was fully warranted and the award was lowered after the jury.

    Winnebago lawsuit (cruise control) NEVER HAPPENED.

    Don’t be sheep: the price of a free society is some idiots trying to do some idiotic things. they generally get caught trying, and sometimes get away with it, preserving your right to a court system to protect your rights.

  40. stanner says:

    They were nice pants after all.

  41. gmoney says:

    This is just the DC court of appeals, so I don’t think it’s earthshattering that they are hearing this guy’s appeal. He is obviously alleging judicial error of some sort. I assume he’ll lose but generally you have this right.

  42. zibby says:

    “The idea that a pure ‘loser pays’ rule really works is pushed only by those who believe corporations should never ever be sued.”

    I guess that settles it then.

  43. bria says:

    Why isn’t this tagged Bad Coonsumer?

  44. Mr.SithNinja says:

    The thing that burns me the most about this whole this was that the guy was a FREAKING JUDGE!! He of all people should know how jacked up our leagal system is because of frivolous b.s. case like this. I am glad he lost his job and I hope this time they stick him with the court costs when he is denied.

  45. katiat325 says:

    Since it’s an appeal, he can’t bring in new evidence (unless DC allows it). I’m hoping, praying even, that the defendants find something to counter sue him on for millions of dollars. Also, he needs to be dis-barred.

    • gmoney says:

      @katiat325: right, this is an appeal asking the court to remand for a new trial – no countersuits, but if there’s a new trial, I presume that can be done.

  46. cubsd says:

    Whet gets me is civil suits like this hurt legitimate consumer civil suits, and diminishes the efforts of others to hold companies responsible.

  47. Charmander says:

    He originally sued the cleaners for $57 million dollars, and then dropped it to $54 million (whew…. that’s more reasonable.) The defendants offered to settle with him for $12,000 – and he refused. Over a Pair. Of. Pants.

    Can he be ordered to undergo a psychological evaluation? I’m thinking there’s a mental health issue here…

  48. SeanMike says:

    I figure that he’s shot every other chance at a reasonable job down the tubes and this is last chance at avoiding the poor house…:-)

  49. dmuth says:

    Roy Pearson is making us look bad. And by “us”, I mean “humanity”.

  50. boxjockey68 says:

    The fact that this case was heard the FIRST time is laughable, the fact the appeal is being heard makes me completely disrespect the judicial system.

  51. Darkwing_Duck says:

    I want to smack this guy over the head. Not to hurt him, mind you, but to bring him back to reality.

  52. ironchef says:

    this guy deserves a swift kick in the nuts. That’s my ruling.

  53. Jeneni says:

    Chances are your pants are not as fancy as the pair
    Of very fancy pants that Mr. Fancy Pants will wear
    When everybody’s marching in the fancy pants parade
    He’s gonna pass the test
    He’s gonna be the best
    The best in terms of pants

    Hehe, seriously wtf is wrong with this guy? I understand being annoyed, but did it really call for vendetta?

  54. I’m curious to see the basis of the appeal, since the trial court judge really went out of her way to allow him to play out every stupid angle so he’d have nothing to appeal on.

  55. Weeeee! I love this guy – in that love-to-hate-him sort of way. He is the best type of nut, totally cracked.

    I read the full “findings of facts and conclusions of law” a while ago… As nutty as most people think this guy is, he is that much crazier…

    He of course, according to him, didn’t actually sue over his pants…. He actually sued because the dry cleaners had a “satifaction guaranteed” sign up, and he was suing because…. ummm how to put it… suing retroactively for dissatisfaction, basically saying they owed for 5 or so years of dissatisfaction, since they eventually didn’t satisfy him. As if the satisfaction guarantee made these dry cleaners responsible for his satisfaction in every way. Because they “lost” his pants, that made him dissatisfied with the entire 5 years of service, and he sued for money back guarantees and false advertising type restitutions for every day of every year, sued each cleaner owner personally, not just the cleaning biz…

    Super Fun Time Crazy, and the guy should actually probably go to jail….

    All the crazy details:

    more pearson .pdf’s [www.google.com]

  56. BTW: “shocking many in the dry-cleaning and legal communities. “

    Best. Line. Ever.

  57. Did I hear the reporter correctly? The original dry cleaner tried to “con” him with another pair of pants?

    Anyway, I think this lawsuit could easily come to a close if the new judge declares the dry cleaner guilty and fine them with a judgment of $54. That’ll really stick it to FancyPants.

  58. Adisharr says:

    I here Wikipedia links him to ‘Douchbag’. Seriously, what a piece of human excrement.

  59. DanKelley98 says:

    He’s in need of court-ordered help. Just my opinion.

  60. banmojo says:

    I appreciate this man is trying to make a point here about shoddy service at most dry cleaners, but 58 million is simply laughable, and he’s doing himself a disservice by continuing along with this amount. D-bag. This man’s attitude sums up a lot about what’s wrong with our country these days.

  61. barty says:

    Two words that will do wonders for both consumers and businesses in this country:

    Loser pays

    Do that and these frivolous, hold out for a settlement, type lawsuits will stop dead in their tracks.

  62. markscottmusic.com says:

    Roy Pearson is a douche.

  63. danman81 says:

    I would like to give this guy a glass of death.

  64. stands2reason says:

    OK, so he lost his suit, and how he lost his court case? [rimshot]

  65. Vegconsumer says:

    What a grade-A Asshole. From my understanding, the owners of this establishment don’t have much money and they can’t be away from work. I hope he loses not only the appeal but all of his money. This is why our country has a reputation for absurd lawsuits.

  66. mrearly2 says:

    Another example of overweening pride.
    He could have simply accepted the offer of replacement pants and been done with it, but…