What a young woman probably thought was a funny gag may result in a prison term of up to 20 years! In a now viral video posted on Twitter, a young woman can be seen walking into her local Walmart where she proceeds to open a store freezer, removing a half gallon container of Blue Bell ice cream. The woman can be seen removing the lid and licking the ice cream before replacing the lid and putting it back in the freezer case as she and the person videotaping the incident laugh. The video understandably caused outrage.
What kinda psychopathic behavior is this?! pic.twitter.com/T8AIdGpmuS— Optimus Primal (@BlindDensetsu) June 29, 2019
In a statement on their website, Blue Bell writes that they believe the tampered with product was never sold. "We have identified a Walmart in Lufkin, Texas, as the store where the malicious act of food tampering took place. Our staff recognized the location in the video, and we inspected the freezer case. We found a Tin Roof half gallon that appears to have been compromised. Based on security footage, the location and the inspection of the carton, we believe we may have recovered the half gallon that was tampered with. Out of an abundance of caution, we have also removed all Tin Roof half gallons from that location."
The Lufkin Police have reported that they believe they have identified the woman in the now viral video, posting an update of the case on their Facebook page. "Detectives believe they have the woman identified and the investigation is ongoing. Appropriate charges will be filed, according to Lufkin Director of Public Safety Gerald Williamson."
According to CBS News, Lufkin Police will be charging the woman with second-degree felony tampering with a consumer product. That charge carries a potential jail term of 2-20 years in prison.
In a more recent update, the police department has revealed the woman has been identified, but as a juvenile, she can't be identified.
"Because she is a juvenile offender, her identity is protected under section 58.104 of the Texas Family Code," the Facebook post reads. "The case will be turned over to the Texas Juvenile Justice Department and remains under investigation."
Although the young woman is a juvenile, authorities are still taking her actions very seriously. "We're appalled that someone would do this," Lufkin Director of Public Safety Gerald Williamson said in a statement to CBS. "We take it incredibly seriously and we're acting on it as the major crime that it is."
Blue Bell also commented to USA Today about the food tampering. "The safety of our ice cream is our highest priority, and we work hard to maintain the highest level of confidence of our customers," the company said. "Food tampering is not a joke, and we will not tolerate tampering with our products. We are grateful to the customers who alerted us and provided us with information."