As 2019 begins to draw to a close, the Popeyes Chicken sandwich continues to be the year’s most talked-about (and memed about) culinary dish. However, the hype has also led to violence throughout the country as multiple locations have seen fights (including one fatality) over the past week since the sandwich’s November debut.
The chicken sandwich was released on August 12 and sold out nationwide in just over two weeks. In response to the overwhelming demand, Popeyes brought it back in early November.
Hip-hop artists and other celebrities have joined the public in sharing their thoughts about the sandwich. In an Instagram live video, Cardi B raved about how the patty and bread “go together.” Megan Thee Stallion gushed that “[Popeyes] might’ve did something with that one!” on Instagram Live.
And as viral video after viral video shows, people are doing whatever it takes to get their hands on one- even if it means risking bodily injuries.
In Oxon Hill, Maryland, Kevin Tyrell Davis, 28, was stabbed to death after he attempted to cut in line at a Popeyes. Another customer confronted him and the two took their fight outside. The other customer stabbed Davis and he was later pronounced dead at the hospital. As of press time, police are still searching for a subject.
In Columbia, Tennessee, in an altercation caught on video, Debra Staggs, 55, was body-slammed on the concrete by Popeyes employee Deriance Ra’Shaiel Hughes, 29. The fight allegedly started when Staggs used a racial slur as she was trying to get a refund from a manager, claiming she was overcharged. According to her lawyers, Staggs’ suffered a broken knee and six cracked ribs. Hughes has been charged with aggravated assault.
In Houston, Texas, a man allegedly pulled a gun and demanded that employees give him a chicken sandwich despite the fact that the employees told customers that they were out of the item.
In Brooklyn, New York a fight between a customer and an employee was also caught on video. The altercation occurred after the customer allegedly paid for what she was told was the last chicken sandwich. However, the customer claims that she did not get her sandwich and instead the employee gave it to another customer. The NYPD is still investigating.
In Los Angeles, a fight broke out between Popeyes employees after an employee was accused of selling sandwiches out of the back door and profiting for themselves.
These are just a few of the incidents reported from around the country as millions more try to get their hands on one- if even out of curiosity’s sake.
While many celebrities are raving about the chicken sandwich, others aren’t as enthused.
Justin Bieber declared the sandwich “not worth the hype” in an Instagram story, and he’s not alone. Lil Boosie called the sandwich “regular” in an Instagram post.
For now, the majority of the public may just have to rely on the opinions of others as the demand shows no sign of waning anytime soon.