The Madison County Record Nov. 22, 2013, 11:50am

Odds are you don’t know who Erica Gooch of Belleville is and care less that she was fired by the Popeyes in Fairview Heights after being accused of smoking marijuana in the ladies’ room before her shift.

If you’re a Popeyes patron, you may be pleased to hear that perhaps there’s one less stoner behind the counter to mess up your order, but the name of the doobie-doer is of no interest to you.

If you do know Erica Gooch, however, this news might warrant your attention. If you’re her parents, for instance, or another relative who want her to stay out of trouble and get ahead in life, you might want to talk with her about this little incident.

If you’re Gooch’s current employer, you might want to inquire further about this pertinent information, and the salient details surrounding it.

The strangest thing about Gooch getting her flaky biscuits booted is that she’s the one telling the whole world about it. No one might ever have known about it if she hadn’t made a federal case out of it – or a county case, rather.

Gooch filed suit in St. Clair County Circuit Court against the Fairview Heights Popeyes this past October, one day shy of the first anniversary of her termination. She is seeking more than $50,000 in damages for allegedly being falsely accused and wrongfully terminated.

Gooch claims she went into the ladies’ room to change her shoes, not to use pot. Her manager who came in behind her alleges that Gooch had been doing hooch, thus triggering her dismissal.

Win or lose, Gooch could someday end up being known as the fried chick from Popeyes.

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