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Students May Have Eaten Contaminated Dressing
A senior at an Illinois high school is accused of contaminating food in the cafeteria.
The boy at Wheaton North High School ejaculated into a bottle of ranch salad dressing last week and left it on a condiments cart in the cafeteria for upperclassmen, school officials said Thursday.
Even though the school's food service provider requires that workers empty condiment containers and wash them every other day, Principal Jill Bullo said the company officials were not sure if the container was washed after lunch , according to the Post-Tribune.
If the container as not washed out, students would have been exposed to the ejaculate during two lunch periods Dec. 6, and five lunch periods on Dec. 7, the paper reported.
The principal said that after Dec. 7, seven lunch periods after the ejaculation, the container definitely would have been cleaned.
But, she said, even if the containers were washed properly and on time, students would still have used the bottle's contents during fourth and fifth period lunch on Dec. 6.
School officials said the boy confessed to contaminating the salad dressing bottle Tuesday, school officials said.
The paper reported that it is unknown whether anyone ate the salad dressing or become ill from it.
The student allegedly bragged to his friends during his lunch period Dec. 6 about ejaculating in the bottle. One of those students told school leaders Tuesday, Wheaton Warrenville School District 200 superintendent Gary T. Catalani said.
"I don't believe that they thought it to be true, but students were talking about this rumor," Bullo said.
The paper reported that parents of students at the school received a mailed letter which told them that the district is working with Wheaton police, who said an attempted aggravated battery arrest is imminent.
"An act occurred that could have physically harmed someone at the school, but no one was physically harmed," police Cmdr. Joseph Eversole said.
The school's punishment for the student was not disclosed.
"We've taken very severe measures against this student," Catalani said.
Sodexho, the food service company, has now discontinued its use of smaller bottles for condiments and has started using larger containers that would make it difficult for a student to steal.
The paper reported that several students were angry about the incident.
"I was very surprised and appalled and embarrassed that this could happen," senior Brian Corcoran said.
One freshman girl told the paper that she would never eat cafeteria food again.
"You're supposed to feel safe enough to eat at school, but this makes you feel disgusted," she said.
A statement was issued Thursday by the DuPage County Health Department, in consultation with the Illinois Department of Public Health.
"The risk of acquiring a sexually transmitted disease or other disease from the ingestion of food contaminated with semen is considered extremely low," the statement said. "We are not aware of any documented cases of hepatitis B, hepatitis C, HIV or other sexually transmitted diseases that have been spread through this means."
The statement did say that the student responsible is undergoing medical testing and if he has an illness that may pose a risk to others, information will be provided to the parents of students who were potentially exposed.
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