The unsuspecting Vice family of Redlands strolled into a San Bernardino Starbucks on Feb 6, 2016. The family consisted of four patrons, husband and wife, Louis and Amanda, his mother, Rhonda Agles and their 2-year-old daughter Payton. The family took their drinks home and Louis’s mother noticed a red streak on her cup, she went to smell it and could smell something metallic. She didn’t really think too much of it until more red marks were discovered on the inner and outer portion of other cups. Together they deduced that it must be blood and since none of them were bleeding, it must have come from an employee.
Both mothers of the group called the Starbucks to find out if one of the employees were bleeding and it turned out that one had been. Both women complained that they or their family could be in grave danger due to this misstep. They claimed that the store manager offered them free drinks for a week due to the bad experience, but they declined, claiming that it was insensitive. The Vice’s wanted the Starbucks employee to have a blood test so that they would know if they were in danger of contracting, HIV or Hepatitis or some other blood-borne disease. Due to federal privacy laws, the best the family could do was to have testing done on themselves over the course of six months to see if they had in fact contracted anything.
The corporate office offered the family a total of $4,000 since they had to go to all of the trouble of being tested. This was not enough for the Vices, they filed suit to sue for negligence, emotional distress, assault and the list goes on. They claim that the whole experience has been overtly traumatic, due to the fact that Starbucks did not seem to care about the severity of the issue and they are demanding to be compensated. So far there has been no public response from Starbucks and the San Bernardino store remains open to this day about two years after the incident.