McDonald's employee charged with tampering of police officer's food: 'A disturbing incident'

A 21-year-old McDonald's employee has been arrested after her managers reportedly saw a video of her tampering with food meant for a police officer. 

Tatyana Hargrove, who works at a McDonald's in Bakersfield, Calif., was arrested Saturday after the restaurant's management alerted police of the alleged crime, KBAK-TV reported. Officers who reviewed footage of the incident, which occurred on Nov. 12, said Hargrove's actions appeared intentional

It's unclear exactly what Hargrove allegedly did to the officer's order, but she was charged with one count of tampering with food, which under California law involves "willfully mingling any poison or harmful substance with any food, drink, medicine or pharmaceutical product."

The 21-year-old has a longstanding history with Bakersfield police, as she recently lost a lawsuit that alleged excessive force against two of the department's officers. That suit, which stems from a 2017 incident, claimed that the officers mistook Hargrove for a male suspect, which led to her being thrown to the ground, punched in the face and bitten by a police dog. 

Both officers' accounts differed from Hargrove's, and last month a jury ruled in the department's favor, the Bakersfield Californian reported. Still, Bakersfield Police Chief Lyle Martin apologized to the 21-year-old's family and said his department would strive to do better. 

Authorities have not provided the identity of the officer involved in the alleged tampering case; however, they have confirmed they were a member of the Bakersfield Police Department.

Jim Abbate, the owner of the Bakersfield McDonald's franchise, released a statement condemning the possible crime, telling Fox News it was a "disturbing incident."

"I want to ensure our customers and law enforcement that the behavior exhibited by the individual involved in this incident does not represent my values nor those of my McDonald’s business," Abbate said. "When we found out about this disturbing incident, we quickly notified the police. We are cooperating with their investigation and want law enforcement to know they are always welcome at McDonald’s."

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