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February 21, 2013
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Woman claims restaurant served her a glass of bleach

SNOWMASS VILLAGE - An upscale restaurant in Snowmass Village faces civil allegations that it served one of its diners a glass of bleach.

A lawsuit filed Tuesday in Pitkin County District Court alleges that Basalt resident Janine Reichert, who was dining with her family at the Viceroy Hotel's Eight K restaurant, continues to suffer from medical problems related to the Feb. 27, 2011 incident.

On that date, a server poured from a water pitcher into empty glasses at the table where Reichert, her husband and three children were seated, the suit says.

"Immediately after Janine drank from the glass she immediately jumped up out of the her seat stating that she had drank chemicals and needed to get to the bathroom as she was going to throw up," the suit claims. "Janine's throat began to burn and swell up."

She then "raced to the restroom where she became violently ill."

Later, a restaurant employee told the husband, John Reichert, that the waiter likely had picked up a water jug soaking in bleach solution, believing it to be drinking water and serving it to the family, the suit says.

Another employee, the restaurant manager, also told Janine Reichert that she had consumed residue from the bleach left in the jug, the suit says. She was treated by paramedics who were called to the restaurant.

"As a result of the bleach poisoning, Janine suffered serious and continual medical problems which have not been resolved to this date including inability to eat effectively and in accordance with Janine's dietary needs and the development of persistent acid reflux syndrome which causes burning in her stomach and throat, serious digestive problems and other symptoms," the suit says.

Representatives of the defendants - Viceroy Hotel Group and Base Village Owner LLC, which owns the hotel - had no comment Wednesday about the allegations.

The Reichert couple's attorney, Alan Feldman of Aspen, said the hotel has not admitted fault and has not been willing to pay the alleged victim's medical bills.

Among the suit's seven claims for relief are negligence and loss of consortium for both the husband and wife. The suit does not specify an amount in monetary damages and demands a jury trial.

rcarroll@aspentimes.com


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The Aspen Times Updated Feb 21, 2013 04:04PM Published Feb 21, 2013 04:03PM Copyright 2013 The Aspen Times. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.