Lone Star Western Beef's website indicates the company has facilities in Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.
"Lone Star has broken the mold when it comes to beef jerky!" the website proclaims. "This ain't no wimpy city slicker beef jerky!"
The incident at the center of the lawsuit — which seeks back wages and punitive damages for the terminated worker — occurred July 7, 2014, in Lone Star's plant in Fairmont, West Virginia.
The complaint says that food processor Michele Butler-Savage that morning heard her co-worker Chris Crane say he had cut his finger, and saw "blood running down" his hand and arm.
Crane had severed part of his thumb while operating a band saw used to cut beef, and Butler-Savage "believed that he sustained a serious injury," the complaint says.
Butler-Savage helped Crane, putting his hand under cold water and putting a paper towel over his hand, while another worker went to get Bachman.
When Bachman arrived of the accident, Butler-Savage had dialed 911, the complaint says. But before the call was connected "Bachman told Buter-Savage not to call 911 and instructed her to hang up the phone," according to the suit.
When she told Bachman that Crane needed an ambulance, "Bachman responded that he would decide whether to call an ambulance and instructed Butler-Savage to get back to work."
Bachman then "collected the severed piece of Crane's thumb" and had a supervisor drive Crane to an urgent clinic, according to the complaint filed in U.S. District Court in the Northern District of West Virginia.
That clinic then transferred Crane, via ambulance, to a hospital emergency room, but doctors there were unable to reattach the severed part to his thumb, according to the suit.
Later that day, Butler-Savage spoke to an inspector from the U.S. Agriculture Department and voiced "concerns about the accident, the cleanup," as well as "the lack of appropriate personal protective equipment," the complaint said. She "also told the inspector that she had tried to call 911."