San Bernardino family sues Starbucks after allegedly drinking barista's blood

The Vice family speaks with KTLA on Feb. 7 2018

The Vice family speaks with KTLA on Feb. 7 2018

While the family was "extremely concerned" over the contaminated beverages, the manager offered the family free drinks for a week, the family claims.

The suit says Amanda and Louis Vice, his mother, Rhonda Agles, and the Vices' then 2-year-old daughter, Payton Vice, ordered drinks at the Starbucks in downtown San Bernardino at 601 W. 2nd St. on February 6, 2016.

The lawsuit seeks damages on claims of failure to warn the family, negligence, breach of express and implied warranty, fraud, intentional infliction of emotional distress, battery, assault, negligent hiring and negligent training and supervision, Pekler said.

Days later, Vice's husband "realized that he left his cup inside of his auto, so he went to this vehicle and discovered that there was blood on the side of the Starbucks label affixed to the cup", according to the suit.

The Vice family's lawsuit alleges that Starbucks management knew an employee at the branch was bleeding, but did not do their due diligence and keep them away from the food and drink on sale.

"My wife and my baby just drank someone's blood", Louis Vice said, describing the panicked aftermath of the incident.

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"We'll work with the family to try to get to a place where they feel comfortable and to better understand these allegations", he said.

After ascertaining that no members of the family had been bleeding, they contacted Starbucks to inform them of what had happened.

According to the family's lawyers, early blood tests have indicated that no diseases were transmitted during the incident, but the final, conclusive tests aren't expected for several months.

"Once we drank it, then we could see on the inside of the rim that there was blood", she said.

But she said the store didn't agree to testing the employee, so she turned to an attorney.

"They had to get tested and retested, and that traumatic event continued to replay in their minds because they simply could not move on from it", Pekler added. The results were negative, fortunately, and Starbucks reportedly offered $1,000 to each family member to make amends. "In the beginning, they really were not sympathetic at all", he said about the company. It's been accused of underfilling lattes, serving coffee drinks too hot and serving them at all (without cancer warnings, that is). "And had they acted in a responsible way, we wouldn't be here today". Starbucks's only statement so far is that it's prepared to fight the family's claims in court.

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