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Second Syringe Found Attached To Juice Carton

July 6, 1988

LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Police are advising consumers in a suburban community to check orange juice containers after a second syringe and note were found attached to a carton in a supermarket.

A syringe was sticking into a 64-ounce carton of Minute Maid orange juice when it was found Tuesday by a clerk at an Alpha Beta supermarket in Woodland Hills, about 25 miles west of downtown, said police Sgt. Fred Tuggey.

A note attached to the carton said ″unsafe packaging,″ said Alpha Beta spokesman Bill Wade. Other Minute Maid cartons were pulled from the shelves.

On Monday, a Minute Maid carton with a similar note and needle was found at a nearby Von’s supermarket. Cartons were taken from the shelves of that store as well. Both cartons were found on non-refrigerated shelves.

″The note threatened contamination,″ said Von’s spokeswoman Mary McAboy. Authorities refused to release its exact wording.

″I would just caution anybody who has a package of this Minute Maid orange juice to check it carefully for small needle holes and return it to the store,″ said police Detective Joel Price.

No injuries were reported in either incident.

Ms. McAboy said the juice carton found Monday was taken to a laboratory, where tests concluded it had not been contaminated. Police were testing both cartons, but results were not immediately available.

Police also said they were working with officials from both stores and with Coca-Cola Co., the maker of Minute Maid products.

″They are similar incidents: same brand of orange juice, same size container,″ said Lt. Lee Lorenze. ″The notes are similar. Right now, we have no idea ... who did it.″

Officials for both supermarket chains and Coca-Cola said there were no indications that any other products in the stores were tampered with.

″We believe they are both isolated incidents,″ said Coca Cola spokeswoman Michelle Beale. ″We do not think there is anything wrong with the orange juice. It is just unfortunate that someone would do this.″

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