Two Pennsylvania kids were rushed to a local medical center’s emergency room with severe burns in their mouth and throat after taking just a couple of sips from the apple juice served at a varied cuisine restaurant in Lancaster, Pa. One of the kids spat saliva out, while her half-brother threw up blood.
Their mother, Virginia Davis, knew that something was wrong when she heard her son Richie Zaragoza screaming that “it burns” multiple times after drinking the juice. Richie, 6, and his sister Ginaya Mendoza, 4, were celebrating the boy’s birthday at the Star Buffet & Grill with their mother.
The manager said after the incident that the apple juice comes from a bottle his staffers bought from a local supermarket. The juice was served in paper cups, and the server had no idea if there was something wrong with it.
The little girl was the first to take a taste of the juice. He mother said she saw the girl spitting saliva out seconds later. Richie on the other hand began screaming and threw up blood.
As of Saturday, the two kids were in intensive care with severe burns at Hershey Medical Center. Authorities said they sent juice samples to a lab for testing.
Inspectors found that the bottled juice sat in the area where soda is stored, and the area was accessible to the public. Authorities did not rule out the hypothesis of a wrongdoer purposely putting something in the apple juice.
The manager confirmed people come and serve themselves as there is no door to block access to that specific area. He added that the management cannot control everything and he doesn’t know whether someone went back there.
The brother-in-law of the kids’ mother said he tested the juice too, but he did not require hospitalization. He noted that it tasted like acid.