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Police: Girls intentionally expose classmate to pineapple despite allergy

BUTLER, Pa. — Girls playing the “high five” game in Butler County deliberately exposed a classmate to pineapple juice, knowing she has a serious allergy to it, police said.

Police said one of them soaked her hand in pineapple juice and made the rounds in the Butler Intermediate High School lunch room, high-fiving other children, until she got to the 14-year-old victim.

“This was an intentional act,” said Lt. Matt Pearson of the Butler Township Police. “They sat at the lunch table right next to her and talked about doing it. Some had reservations, but they went through with it.”


Police said two 14-year-olds and a 13-year-old devised the plan, knowing the victim could go into anaphylactic shock. And she did.

“That’s a criminal act,” said Lanette Bowser, who has a child in the district. “That’s just wrong.”

Police say what makes this so vindictive, and so much more than bullying, is everybody knows this girl has a pineapple allergy. The district has a plan in place, all students have been educated on it and pineapple is not allowed on the menu.

The fruit cup in question was brought in a bagged lunch.

Many moms Channel 11 spoke to can’t believe kids so young would act like this.

“These kids need to be held accountable,” said Diana Bobbett.

One students overheard what happened and immediately went to the victim and told her, police said. She went to the nurse for her Epipen but was rushed to the hospital, where she recovered.

“It is our expectation that our students respect themselves and others. When that does not occur, the district will take appropriate discipline action and if appropriate contact law enforcement,” Butler Area School District Superintendent Brian White said in a statement.

The 14-year-old girl accused of exposing the girl to the pineapple is charged with aggravated assault, criminal conspiracy, simple assault, reckless endangerment, harassment and disorderly conduct.

The other two students were each charged with criminal conspiracy, reckless endangerment and disorderly conduct.