NYPD finds 'no criminality' by Shake Shack employees after three officers got sick from milkshakes

The three officers had fallen ill after consuming some food from the restaurant that which is located on Broadway and Fulton Street in downtown Manhattan on Friday


                            NYPD finds 'no criminality' by Shake Shack employees after three officers got sick from milkshakes
(Getty Images)

The NYPD investigated a case of possible poisoning in a potential hate crime involving three police officers at a New York Shake Shack. It was found that there was no criminality after officers had become sick from the shakes they consumed. Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison tweeted on Tuesday, June 16, "After a thorough investigation by the NYPD’s Manhattan South investigators, it has been determined that there was no criminality by shake shack’s employees."

The police had initially suspected that the officers had possibly been poisoned with bleach, CBS reports. Sources shared that the incident could have been accidental and a result of a cleaning solution that was not properly removed from the shake machine. The three officers had fallen ill after consuming some food from the restaurant that which is located on Broadway and Fulton Street in downtown Manhattan on Friday, June 12. Initial reports had alleged that an employee at the eatery could have contaminated the officers' milkshakes with bleach. 

According to the Daily Mail, all three officers were members of the Bronx's 42nd Precinct and were assigned to protest detail. They were taken to the Bellevue Hospital, but have since been released. Sources spoke to the New York Daily News and said that before getting sick, the officers had noticed that their shakes tasted a bit strange. One had noticed a clump in their cups, while another officer could smell bleach. Samples of the milkshakes have been taken for testing and officers spent many hours collecting some pieces of evidence at the Shake Shack. 

The officers had also searched through garbage cans that were located outside the building where the Shake Shack is located. An MTA cleaner, John Goldman said, "They were looking in all the garbage cans, and then a lot of cops went into Shake Shack. I thought they were looking for guns or drugs, some sort of evidence." "This is the first time anything like this has happened," Goldman added. 

NYC's Patrolmen's Benevolent Association had earlier issued a statement on Twitter and warned officers to beware of food that they haven't made themselves. They had earlier said that "a toxic substance, believed to be bleach" was put into the officers' drinks. On Twitter, they said, "When NYC police officers cannot even take meal without coming under attack, it is clear that environment in which we work has deteriorated to a critical level. We cannot afford to let our guard down for even a moment."

The official Shake Shack account released a statement and said, "We are horrified by the reports of police officers injured at our 200 Broadway Shack in Manhattan. We are working with the police in their investigation right now." The Shake Shack account had also posted, "Our team is working hard to get the full picture. In the meantime, we’re relieved to hear the officers are all okay." The suspected case of poisoning comes amid much unrest and outrage across the nation over the death of George Floyd who was killed while being arrested by an ex-cop Derek Chauvin in Minneapolis. In the viral video, a now-former Minneapolis police officer, Derek Chauvin was seen kneeling on the neck of 46-year-old Floyd while arresting him.

Protesters march down 16th Street towards the White House during demonstrations sparked by the killing of George Floyd on June 6, 2020 in Washington, DC. This is the 12th day of protests since George Floyd died in Minneapolis police custody on May 25 (Getty Images) 

Floyd repeatedly said he was unable to breathe but Chauvin paid no heed. Chauvin knelt on Floyd's neck for almost nine minutes in the video that sparked outrage not just in the US but across the world. An official post-mortem examination declared the death of George Floyd as a homicide on Monday, June 1. Chauvin was charged with second-degree murder in addition to second-degree manslaughter. There were 3 other officers involved -- Tou Thao, J Alexander Kueng, and Thomas Lane -- who were charged with aiding and abetting murder. 

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