Police in East Texas say a teenager from San Antonio is suspected of taking a tub of ice cream from a Walmart freezer, removing the top to lick the ice cream and then returning it to the freezer.
Blue Bell Creameries said in a statement that it determined a Walmart store in Lufkin was where “the malicious act of food tampering took place.”
A short video posted to social media last week shows the teenage girl laughing as she places the top back on the half-gallon container and returning it to the freezer.
Blue Bell says the container that was “compromised” was found and removed.
The company says “food tampering is not a joke.”
Lufkin police previously said the suspect faced a felony charge of tampering with a consumer product.
The suspect, from San Antonio, is a juvenile, so police will not identify her.
“We do not intend to pursue charges against her as an ‘adult’ and therefore what happens from here is at the discretion of the juvenile justice system,” police said in a statement.
Offices are discussing her adult boyfriend’s involvement with prosecutors.
The statement from the Lufkin Police Department says, “The case will be turned over to the Texas Juvenile Justice Department and remains under investigation.”
The ice cream maker said it inspected the freezer case that contained the licked ice cream, found the problematic tub, and removed all Tin Roof half-gallons from the Lufkin Walmart.
“The safety of our ice cream is our highest priority, and we work hard to maintain the highest level of confidence of our customers,” Blue Bell said.
A Walmart in Corpus Christi isn’t taking any chances with its own ice cream stock.
To protect its frozen goods, the store said, it stationed an “armed” guard in front of its Blue Bell freezer and posted a photo Wednesday of an employee holding a squirt gun; the photo was removed about 18 hours later.
“We’re guarding our Blue Bell Ice cream for your Weekend party, what a great way to cool down in the Hot Texas heat !” the post said.