Norfolk DA opts to not prosecute Medfield barista accused of spitting into police officer’s drink

The barista's attorney had filed a motion to dismiss the case earlier this year.

Norfolk County prosecutors will no longer pursue a case against a Medfield Starbucks barista who allegedly spit in a drink to be served to a Norfolk police officer last year.

Boston 25 News first reported Thursday the district attorney’s office filed a “nolle prosequi” so the case against Kaitlyn Todd will not move forward.

According to the news station, the Norfolk County District Attorney’s Office said prosecutors are ethically bound to not bring charges that cannot be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

The news came just a day before Todd was to be arraigned in Dedham District Court on three charges, including assault and distributing food with a harmful substance.


Todd was accused of spitting in the drink of Norfolk Police Officer Eric Van Ness as he waited for his order in full uniform at the Medfield coffee shop in May, according to Boston 25 News.

Van Ness has said he saw Todd holding “a drink very close to her mouth” and that he believes she “spit into the cup,” the station reported.

Last month, Todd’s attorney filed a motion to dismiss the charges, arguing there is no evidence in the case to support the allegation.

Van Ness did not actually see Todd spit into the cup, and there is no proof that Todd knew the drink was for him, the motion stated.

Video obtained by the news station shows Todd lifting the cup to her face as she prepares the drink, but the motion contends “the recipe for the drink, which was started by a different barista, included a strong-smelling vanilla extract, and Ms. Todd raised the cup to smell it to see if the extract had already been added,” according to the outlet.

Starbucks, in a statement, told Boston 25 News in December it was aware of the allegation against Todd and investigated it.

“We immediately moved to investigate but found the claims to be unsubstantiated,” the statement read. “At Starbucks, we have a deep respect for the law enforcement officers who keep our partners and communities safe. Everyone should expect a welcoming experience in our stores when they visit.”


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