May 2006

William Marler, the Seattle attorney who made a name for himself representing Jack in the Box customers exposed to the E. coli bacteria in undercooked hamburger, said he plans to file as many as 148 cases against Sheetz Inc. and now-defunct tomato supplier Coronet Foods Inc. concerning allegedly salmonella-infested tomatoes, reported The West Virginia Record.
The salmonella outbreak occurred in July 2004. Pennsylvania health officials determined early on in their investigation that there was no evidence of insufficient cooking or hygiene on the part of Sheetz. The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) quickly determined the source of contamination was from Roma tomatoes that Sheetz bought from Wheeling, W. Va.-based Coronet, which got them from a Florida tomato packing house. Coronet shut down and filed for bankruptcy in November 2004.

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In an April 28th, 2006 MSNBC Dateline investigative report titled “Unseen danger in bagged salads,” Dateline documents several cases of E. coli infections caused by bagged salad, including an 11-year-old girl and a 54 year-old-old man.
In September and October, 2005, at least 23 Minnesotans became ill with E. coli O157:H7 infections after