06/20/2011 01:32 pm ET | Updated Aug 20, 2011

Ex-Con Sues Red Lobster For Not Hiring Him

A man is suing the Times Square Red Lobster, claiming that the restaurant refused to hire him since he is a convicted felon.

Robert Smith, 38, has spent more than a decade in prison for at least three counts of robbery. In February, he submitted an application to the chain and never heard back. On his fifth follow-up phone call, he reached manager Nicole McVaugh who told him "I'm sorry to have to give you this info, but in my position as manager I don't hire convicted felons."

Smith filed a lawsuit with the Manhattan Supreme Court last week and apparently has a case. Employers cannot turn down convicted felons unless the applicant's criminal history poses an "unreasonable risk" to safety.

Red Lobster claims it has no record of ever receiving Smith's application.