Police Use Waiter's DNA to Connect Him to a Loogie in a Customer's Cup

Illustration for article titled Police Use Waiter's DNA to Connect Him to a Loogie in a Customer's Cup

A waiter at a Chili’s near Syracuse, New York was charged with disorderly conduct last year after hocking what sounds like a fairly enormous loogie into a customer’s drink. The Syracuse Post-Standard reports that the crime of spittery was pinned on the waiter using DNA matching. Great news for spit justice, less great news for loogie fans, and kind of an intense use of DNA all around.


The Post-Standard’s John O’Brien reports that Gregory Lamica was charged with disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor, after spitting into the drink of Ken Yerdon, who’d been at the restaurant with his wife Julie Aluzzo-Yerdon. The Yerdons evidently annoyed Lamica by complaining about undercooked broccoli and missing chips, according to a lawsuit they filed recently, and when Male Yerdon asked for a drink refill, Lamica took the cups out of site, and, according to the Post story, didn’t make eye contact when he returned.

According to what Yerdon told the newspaper, as he was driving home, the lid of the cup popped off, allowing him to behold the giant spitwad. He turned around and went back to the restaurant, confronting a manager who apologized and plied him with coupons but didn’t admit that anyone at the restaurant had done it. From the story:

As he left, Yerdon saw Lamica in the parking lot, according to a state police report.

“I said, ‘Why did you spit in my drink?’” Yerdon’s statement to police said. “He was bawling. He just kept walking with his apron in his hand and he didn’t answer me. I said to him, ‘You wouldn’t be crying if you didn’t spit in my drink.’ He said, ‘I don’t want to lose my job.’ “

The Yerdons called the state police. An investigator questioned Lamica at Chili’s and he denied spitting in the cup, the Yerdons said. But he agreed to let the trooper take a swab of saliva, they said.

Three months later, the DNA results came back. The troopers called Lamica into their barracks and he again denied spitting into Yerdon’s drink, according to the Yerdons. Then the troopers confronted Lamica with the DNA results and he confessed, the Yerdons said.

According to the suit, Yerdon says he got tested for HIV and hepatitis (even though, as ABC reports, HIV can’t be spread through spit). He and his wife are suing Chili’s for unspecified damages for not firing Lamica, who worked at the restaurant until quitting in October. The Yerdon’s allege that constitutes “negligence and retention of an incompetent employee.”

Since the story broke, someone has set up a pretty disturbing Facebook page featuring Lamica’s name. It contains numerous threats against him, including one man who writes, “We need to make sure this low life scum never works again... he needs to be thrown in a swamp some place tied by his kneck [sic].”

Regardless of the truly gross nature of this story, by and large, restaurant workers aren’t big fans of spitting in people’s food. It’s gross, overly vindictive, illegal, and, most importantly, will almost always get your ass fired (except, evidently, in this case). Don’t spit in things, for real.

Contact the author at anna.merlan@jezebel.com.
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Screengrab via Waiting/Lions Gate



And how’s that rape kit backlog going?