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Murrysville activist wins 2-cent lawsuit against Wal-Mart in sausage snafu

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Thursday, Sept. 29, 2011

The world's largest retailer found itself in court in Westmoreland County Thursday to defend a 2-cent discrepancy.

Wal-Mart claims the mix-up over the price of a pack of Banquet "Brown n Serve" sausage at its Delmont store was caused by new packaging.

But Murrysville consumer activist Mary Bach claims the overcharge was intentional and they occur far too often.

Export District Judge Charles Conway sided with Bach in her civil lawsuit alleging unfair trade practices. He awarded Bach $100 in damages, plus about $80 in court costs.

After the victory, Bach and her husband, Leonard, said the fight isn't over the money. They said the retail giant should be more diligent in ensuring that prices listed on store shelves match what prices scan at the register for customers.

"This is the fifth lawsuit we've had against this store for the same problem ... . This isn't an isolated incident," Mary Bach said.

Bach testified that on Aug. 20 she purchased the sausages, which had a posted price of 98 cents. But the store scanners erred, charging her $1 when she checked out.

"The clerk did everything right when I pointed out the error and refunded me the difference and noted the error," Bach said.

However, six days later, she went back to the store to purchase more of the same sausage. The shelf price was still 98 cents, but she was again charged $1, she testified.

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