An Arby's manager in Vancouver, Washington admitted to urinating in the milkshake mix on multiple occasions before it was served to dozens of customers because he got "sexual gratification" from the act.
Stephen Sharp was first contacted by the Digital Evidence Cybercrime Unit over possible possession and distribution of child pornography. He was arrested on May 10, and while in custody admitted to possessing illicit materials and having a sexual interest in children.
Police Found Footage of Sharp Peeing into a Bag of Milkshake Mix
Vancouver police said they uncovered footage of the 29-year-old man peeing into a bag of milkshake mix as they were executing a search warrant on his phone as part of the investigation into child sex abuse images, the Columbian newspaper reported.
The manager made one court appearance last Wednesday on the child abuse image allegations and another on Friday, for a new allegation of second-degree assault with sexual motivation, after police said they found the 16-second urination video.
According to a probable cause affidavit filed in Clark county superior court, the video's forensic data showed it was recorded on 30 October at an Arby's in the Vancouver's Mill Plain neighborhood.
Milkshake Mix May Have Been Served to Dozens of Customers
The manager acknowledged to investigators that he urinated in the milkshake mix bag at least twice, but said he was "almost sure" he threw the bag out. He said he was working alone in the restaurant that night and that he did it for sexual gratification.
He told detectives that if he did not throw the bag away, it was almost certainly added to other mix by the next shift and served to customers, police said. However, another manager at the same Arby's informed detectives that they served around 30 to 40 milkshakes and one ice cream float on the day the video was recorded.
In an email to the Columbian, Sgt Julie Ballou of Vancouver police said investigators had no evidence that Arby's or its franchise owner was aware of the man's actions.
Police are now looking for anyone who ordered a milkshake from the 221 Northeast 104th Avenue Arby's in Vancouver on 30 October or 31 October — and who has a receipt — to contact them.
Arby's Releases Statement, Condemn Sharp's Actions as 'Abhorrent' and 'Unacceptable'
Arby's representatives have condemned Mr Sharp's alleged actions. "The alleged actions of the former franchised employee are abhorrent and unacceptable," an Arby's spokesperson said in a statement to FOX broadcasters. "We have taken immediate action with the franchise group who terminated the former employee and is fully cooperating with the authorities in their investigation."
Sharp is currently booked at the Clark County Jail. A judge has since raised his bail Friday from $5,000 to $40,000 and he is scheduled to be arraigned on 25 May.