A uniformed cop in northern Utah probably had an inkling that the Subway worker had spiked his drink on Monday when he felt strange after taking three sips of the lemonade. It turns out he had been served much more than a cooling drink – a worker at the restaurant is now accused of spiking the drink with THC, the ingredient in marijuana which causes users to feel “high,” and meth.
It is unknown why 18-year-old Subway worker Tanis Lloyd Ukena, who is alleged to have spiked the lemonade, decided to drug the officer. He has been arrested on suspicion of surreptitiously giving a poisonous substance, a felony, which he denies having done. WDTN reports that he has admitted to being the worker to prepare and serve the spiked drink.
A statement of probable cause was filed in the case on Tuesday. KUTV reports that according to the complaint, a Layton police sergeant in his cruiser took a trip through the Subway drive-thru to order a drink on Monday. Immediately after drinking the beverage given to him by the worker, the officer began to feel strange.
His impairment was obvious as he struggled to move his foot to the brake pedal of his car when he reached a red light. After making it back to the station, he zoned out and had difficulty answering questions. His fellow officers made sure the drugged cop made it to the hospital. Lieutenant Travis Lyman reports the sergeant is finishing his recovery at home today after being treated at the hospital and released on Monday.
Snopes reports that Officer Clint Bobrowski described to local media how the officer was acting at the station after drinking the spiked drink.
“He would have thoughts, but his body wouldn’t react to it, so if he was trying to move his arm, his arm wouldn’t move when he thought it should. He was having a hard time maintaining his focus. He was having a hard time maintaining his body. His body was jerking. And for a trained police officer watching him, it was everything I’ve seen in people who abuse illegal narcotics.”
KUTV also reports that the police department has viewed the restaurant’s surveillance tape, which reveals the worker making the drink, leaving the frame of vision with an unknown object in his hand for a long moment, and then returning to the frame and giving the officer his drink.
A spokesman for Subway, Shawn Cook, expressed the company’s shock at the allegations that one of their workers had spiked a drink and pledged the restaurant’s cooperation with police. He would not comment on whether the worker has been terminated from his sandwich artist position.
No public phone number for Ukena is available, and it is not yet known whether the worker has retained an attorney. He has been released after posting bail of $10,000. As of now, he has not been formally charged with a crime relating to the spiked drink. According to police, their only prior interaction with the Subway worker was to issue him a speeding ticket. Court records also show that he had some prior traffic misdemeanors.
As part of their investigation, Layton police officers will attempt to discern whether the worker targeted the sergeant and spiked his drink simply because he was a cop, or if there was another reason behind his alleged actions. Given the increasing tension between police and citizens after a national spate of police shootings, the idea that someone would target a cop in hopes of doing harm is not far-fetched, said Lyman.
“It’s not a reach to make that connection based on the climate right now.”
He added that the relationship between police and citizens in Layton, which has about 74,000 residents, is generally good, but that he believes police, who often stop at drive-thrus while on patrol, “will be bringing lunch from home for some time,” presumably to avoid having their own drinks spiked by their friendly drive-thru worker.
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