Walmart Throws Out $19,000 In Meat After Man Pokes Syringe Into Sausages

It’s a classic saying: One bad apple spoils the entire barrel, and a few syringe-poked packages of breakfast sausage causes Walmart to toss out the entire section of the meat department.

Early Saturday morning, an employee at the Walmart in Poulsbo, WA, noticed a hypodermic syringe sticking out of a Jimmy Dean sausage. An inspection of nearby packages revealed that they too had been poked.

“Somebody had pushed a syringe into the tube at an angle, and it poked out the other side,” a Poulsbo police officer tells KOMO News. “The actual metal needle tip was not attached to the syringe though.”

A search of the messed-with meats could not turn up a needle and the police say that the syringe itself did not appear to have been used for anything other than being pushed through the sausage packages.

Out of concern for customers — and the lawsuit that would inevitably have happened — Walmart sealed off the area and discarded all the meat, valued at around $19,000.

In reviewing security camera footage, police identified a man poking around the sausage section shortly before 1 a.m. That same man then fell asleep in the in-store Subway eatery before eventually being picked up in the parking lot.

Police identified and arrested the man on food-tampering charges.

They say that no one purchased any meat at this Walmart during the five hours the syringe sat undiscovered in the sausage section.

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.