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Hundreds contact Leawood police as part of food contamination case at Hereford House

Leawood Police Department tesla
Posted at 5:38 PM, May 09, 2024

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Leawood police investigating the alleged criminal contamination of food at Hereford House say they’ve heard from 230 people who dined at the restaurant during the time period of the alleged crimes.

In order to respond to the growing number of diners, Leawood police have established a secure form for diners to submit their information.

Police ask anyone who ate at the restaurant between March 26 and April 25 and experienced illness after their meals to fill out the form.

Police say anyone who has already submitted information does not need to resubmit their info on the form.

Last month, the Johnson County District Attorney’s office charged Jace Christian Hanson, 21, with felony contamination of food served at the restaurant.

Court documents released Wednesday revealed Hanson, who had recently been hired at the restaurant, allegedly contaminated food with bodily fluids.

In other instances, Hanson allegedly rubbed his genitals against other food before setting it aside for later service to guests.

Hanson told detectives he contaminated food more than 20 times.

On Thursday, owners of the restaurant said they were “disturbed and angered” to learn of Hanson’s alleged actions.

"Everyone connected with the Hereford House restaurant in Leawood is disturbed, even angered, by the food tampering that occurred at that location in April," Hereford House said in part in the statement. "Until the release of the affidavit on Wednesday concerning defendant’s actions and statements, we were unable to publicly address the situation as we were learning the details released by law enforcement authorities at the same time as the news media and the public."

Upon learning about the contamination, Hereford House says it destroyed all food in the kitchen area and thoroughly cleaned and sanitized the restaurant.

Hanson remains in custody at the Johnson County Detention Center on a $100,000 bond.