Uh oh! Here’s another messy family blow up that’s making news. And we thought everything was all love between mother and son. We’re referring to “Sweetie Pie’s” restaurateurs Miss Robbie and her son and business partner Tim.
obviously looks can be deceiving and that’s the case here. The bottom line is that Robbie Montgomery, the owner of the St. Louis-based “Sweetie Pie’s” chain has filed a lawsuit against her son, Tim Norman, for infringement of her trademark over the use of the “Sweetie Pie’s” name of restaurants he has opened in St. Louis and Los Angeles (North Hollywood).
Of course most folks outside of the St. Louis area know of Miss Robbie and Tim from the “Welcome to Sweetie Pie’s” reality TV show on OWN. In fact, because of the exposure the NAACP Image Award winning show has received, the restaurant chain has become so successful that it even released a companion cookbook. Also, in 2015, Miss Robbie started authorizing qualified restaurants to use the “Sweetie Pies” trademark.
READ RELATED STORY: ‘WELCOME TO SWEETIE PIE’S’ MISS ROBBIE’S GRANDSON FATALLY SHOT IN ST. LOUIS
But Montgomery didn’t grant her son permission to use the trademark. She says in her lawsuit that he infringed on it with the opening of “TJ’s Sweetie Pie’s NOHO (in North Hollywood),” which was depicted in a 2015 episode of the show and used signage with that name to promote it. Additionally Montgomery claims Norman opened other eateries in Berkeley and Flourissant, Missouri and each of those stores violate her trademark rules as well.
Additionally, since Norman “is identified as a member of Miss Robbie’s family on the Sweetie Pie’s show, along with his position on the show, further increases the potential of causing confusion in the marketplace,” the lawsuit says.
Miss Robbie also says Tim took money from her Manchester, MO location and used it for his restaurants. Despite demanding the monies be returned, Tim Norman has refused, says the lawsuit, which seeks unspecified damages.
We can only wonder if this drama will be documented on the next season of the show … if there is one.
By the way, as of this posting, neither Montgomery or Norman have commented publicly on the case.