BERRIEN SPRINGS - A policeman who took a bite out of a sandwich that had allegedly been spit on at a McDonald's restaurant will have to undergo testing for about a year for possible diseases
, Berrien Springs Police Chief Milt Agay said Friday.
Meanwhile Jacob Skipworth, 32, of Berrien Springs, sits in the Berrien County Jail on a $10,000 bond, charged with a felony food law violation for allegedly adulterating food. Skipworth was on parole, having served 14 years in an Indiana prison for a violent home invasion as a juvenile that left an elderly couple injured,
according to police.
Carol Brohman, Berrien County Trial Court administrator in Niles, said a preliminary hearing for Skipworth is set for June 23. Skipworth was arrested by Berrien Springs-Oronoko Township Police on June 5 after a two-day investigation.
A Berrien County Sheriff's deputy, whose name police would not release, citing privacy issues, called Berrien Springs police on June 3 and said he was in full uniform when he drove a marked squad car through the drive-through at McDonald's in Berrien Springs that morning. After biting into the Egg McMuffin sandwich, he said he knew immediately that something was wrong with it. He said that when he opened the sandwich, it appeared someone had spit on it.
According to a police report obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, the policeman took the sandwich back to the restaurant and showed it to Assistant Manager Autumn Kessinger. She told police the sandwich contained a substance she described as "stringy with mucus
." ( LoL , EEwwwwww
Kessinger said she had put the sandwich into the trash bin in the office of the manager, Dennis Bentley, who was not working that day. She telephoned him about the incident, and he said the deputy had told him that the sandwich should be saved. But when Kessinger looked again in the bin, she couldn't find it, and she spent about two hours looking for it, she told police.
After talking with witnesses, police also tried to locate the sandwich in the trash at McDonald's but couldn't find it.
The sheriff's deputy told Berrien Springs police that a worker at the drive-through window was acting "goofy" when he ordered the sandwich, but that he didn't think anything of it at the time.
One employee told police he saw Skipworth appear to lick the bun of a sandwich and then spit on the bun, and laugh about how he "got" the cop.
This same employee told Bentley that he later saw Skipworth come out of the employee's bathroom, and quoted Skipworth as saying he had just flushed the sandwich down the toilet, Bentley told police.
Another employee also told police he heard Skipworth laugh and comment on a policeman getting his food spit on. Skipworth was arrested despite his denial of spitting on any food.
The police report said Skipworth told investigators that, despite having spent 14 years in prison in Indiana, he has nothing against police.
Before being jailed, Skipworth was taken to Lakeland Medical Center, St. Joseph, for a blood draw. The results were not listed in the police report.
Store manager Bentley, in a brief phone call with The Herald-Palladium Friday, said he could not comment on the matter, including the status of Skipworth's employment.