10-year-old Boy, 4-year-old Sister In Critical Condition After Drinking Apple Juice
Two Lancaster County children were hospitalized and are now in critical condition after drinking apple juice at a restaurant on Friday. A caustic liquid was found in their beverage during a birthday party at the Star Buffet & Grill 2200 block of Lincoln Highway East in East Lampeter Township, Pennsylvania.
According to the report Richie Zaragoza, who was celebrating his 10th birthday, threw up blood. His 4-year-old half-sister, Ginaya Mendoza, spat saliva out and then threw up after she sipped a drink of the juice. They were both immediately taken to Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center where they spent a night at the intensive care unit.
Ginaya drank the juice before Richie and they thought she was just sick when she vomited and said her stomach hurt. Richie's mother, Virginia Davis, 32, said after her son drank the juice he'd been served he started screaming "It burns, it burns." That was when they realized the drinks were contaminated.
Virginia's brother-in-law, Luis Mercado, also put the cup to his mouth and realized it tasted like acid. He spat up blood too but was not hospitalized.
According to The Daily Mail, Ginaya was released from the hospital on Sunday while Richie remained in the hospital with severe mouth and throat burns. Virginia said her son already had cystic fibrosis and diabetes and they did not expect his birthday to go horribly wrong.
The restaurant serves an all-you-can-eat Chinese and Japanese food. They also serve Italian and American dishes.
The Philly reported that restaurant manager, Steve Weng, said he did not know how the apple juice became contaminated. It was purchased at a local supermarket. Right now, the East Lampeter Township Police Department has conducted an investigation about the issue. They have reported that the liquid that the children had consumed is being tested.
A spokesperson from the hospital said that Richie is now in fair condition and has regained consciousness.