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10 Bizarre (and Cruel) Condiment Crimes

by Julie Henthorn
fact checked by Darci Heikkinen

Condiments like ketchup, mustard, and mayonnaise, along with other sauces, can be found at barbeques, picnics, and almost any given restaurant or fast-food establishment, with choices and variations seeming somewhat endless.

While not a proper dish on their own, these sauces can create the perfect flavor pairing when added to hamburgers, hot dogs, and sandwiches or used for dipping and in cold salads.

Given their use in food preparation, it would be natural to assume that condiments are meant to only serve their purpose at meals. Yet rather than using these flavor-enhancing sauces for good, this list contains the stories of people who chose to weaponize them in some of the most unusual ways.

Here are ten bizarre and cruel condiment crimes.

Related: Top 10 Strangest Flavoured Foods And Drinks Ever

10 Domestic Ketchup Battery

When 37-year-old Peter Wagman of Pinellas Park, Florida, began having suspicions that his girlfriend of 11 years, Heather King, was being unfaithful, rather than attempting to discuss the matter, Wagman chose revenge. His weapon of choice? Ketchup.

On June 1, 2019, King was awoken in the middle of the night to find Wagman pouring ketchup all over her and calling her expletive names.

When police arrived at the home, they found King “covered in ketchup.” While Wagman tried to deny the saucy attack, given the ketchup on his pants, it was clear to police that he indeed was the attacker.

Wagman was charged with first-degree misdemeanor domestic battery and was ordered to have no future contact with King.[1]

9 Mustard-Covered Marijuana

Photo credit: Fox59

Fifty-two-year-old Richard Sherman of El Cajon, California, was driving a semi-truck near Cloverdale, Indiana, on September 29, 2016, when he was pulled over by the Indiana State Police.

However, when officers approached the semi for a routine safety inspection, they were met with an overwhelming smell—mustard.

When officers searched the cab of Sherman’s truck, they quickly discovered the source of the mustard smell. Sherman had 48 pounds (21 kilograms) of high-grade marijuana worth approximately $200,000 in vacuum-sealed bags and had used mustard in an attempt to mask the smell.

Sherman was charged with a level 5 felony for dealing more than 10 pounds (4.5 kilograms) of marijuana and was also charged with a level 6 felony for possession of over 10 pounds of marijuana as a prior offender.[2]


8 Soy Sauce Vandalism

When the Freshii restaurant in Guelph, Canada, closed for the day on September 18, 2019, they had no reason to assume anything was out of the ordinary. Little did anyone know that an unidentified man had been hiding in the restroom, eagerly waiting for the close of business.

However, the man was not empty-handed and brought along a duffle bag that contained break-and-enter tools to gain access to the business’s safe. He also had another odd “tool” in his arsenal: soy sauce.

The man was able to crack open the safe, which contained $2,400 in cash, but apparently, he was not satisfied and continued his crime spree inside the restaurant by smashing ceiling tiles, walls, and HVAC equipment before then pouring soy sauce all over the electronics.

Given that the perpetrator had been locked in, he then broke the restaurant’s window by hitting it with a mallet and later throwing a chair through the glass in order to escape.

The man caused over $100,000 in damage to the business, but thankfully, on November 22, 2019, he was located and arrested on a series of charges.[3]

7 Salad Dressing Stick-Up

Sixteen-year-old Larry Franklin, a high school student in DeLand, Florida, went into the DeLand Citro gas station on October 22, 2010, pretending he was armed with a weapon.

His attempt to rob the convenience store was successful, and the teen made off with $468. Therefore, in a brazen act of overconfidence, Franklin decided he would attempt a second robbery just two and a half hours later.

Franklin then went to the Friendly Way convenience store, grabbed a bottle of ranch dressing from the store shelf, and walked behind the counter, demanding money from the clerk under the guise of having a weapon. However, Franklin got quite a shock when the clerk pulled out a very real gun. The clerk then called the police, and thankfully, they arrived as Franklin was attempting to exit the store.

Franklin admitted to both robberies, stating he had planned to use the money to buy jewelry and drugs. Franklin was charged with two counts of felony robbery.[4]


6 Hot Sauce Cruelty

Man poured hot sauce over puppy

Sarasota, Florida, resident 47-year-old Ephrian Myles’s girlfriend owned a three-month-old dachshund-Chihuahua mix puppy named Gizmo. Unfortunately, the tiny pup, who had a history of seizures, began having an episode on February 23, 2014 and was yelping due to the convulsions.

Rather than trying to comfort the pup or provide any type of care, Myles became agitated with Gizmo’s wailing and cruelly slathered the puppy in hot sauce.

Shortly after that, Gizmo’s eyes had swollen shut, and the pup was having trouble breathing, so in a frantic attempt for help, Myles’s girlfriend rushed the puppy to a local fire department. Thankfully, first responders were able to assist and bathed the pup to relieve the irritation.

Officers then made a follow-up visit to Myles’s residence to question him, and although they discovered a pool of hot sauce, he denied any involvement in the incident. Gizmo was turned over to animal services, treated for his injuries, and eventually adopted by new owners.

Myles was charged with felony aggravated animal cruelty and sentenced to a year in jail, followed by 18 months of probation. In addition, he was also ordered to complete an anger management course and can no longer own a pet or live at any residence with an animal.[5]

5 Sticky Fuel

On April 3, 2022, an unnamed woman and her boyfriend were confronted by 42-year-old Jeremy Fischer in the parking lot of an Alpena, Michigan, business. The couple got into an altercation with Fischer, but he left the premises.

However, when the couple tried to leave later that day, they noticed their vehicle wouldn’t start. Given the prior altercation with Fischer, they assumed he was the culprit.

The woman called the police, and they discovered a sticky substance on the fuel cap that smelled like maple syrup. After having the vehicle towed to a local automotive repair shop, mechanics identified a “gooey substance” in the bottom of the fuel tank, which had clogged the fuel pump. The necessary repairs would cost the couple $1,000.

A warrant was issued for Fischer, and he was arrested on May 19, 2022, during a traffic stop. Fischer was charged with malicious destruction of personal property.[6]


4 Teriyaki Troublemaker

Teriyaki Sauce Crime

On August 23, 2022, 42-year-old Ronnie Marie Deleski of Arizona went into the Medication Station cannabis dispensary in Newport, Oregon. Unfortunately, Deleski’s visit did not have a happy ending.

After making her purchase, Delski began smearing sauce packets around the sales counter and then throwing them at the employees. The employees then confronted Deleski about her behavior, asking her to stop before escorting her to the lobby.

From here, Deleski’s troublesome behavior only escalated as she pulled a bottle of teriyaki sauce out of her purse. She then poured it on the carpet, flung it on the walls and furniture, and did not stop until the entire bottle was empty, finally leaving the store.

Shortly after that, Deleski was located by police. While she briefly tried to resist arrest, she was eventually taken into custody. Deleski was charged with criminal mischief and resisting arrest.[7]

3 Not So Yum-Yum Sauce

Zhong Kun Jiang, the owner of Hibachi Express in North Lakeland, Florida, was conducting a routine inspection of the restaurant’s supplies in June 2017. However, during his inspection, he noticed the “Yum Yum Sauce” that the restaurant served with various dishes had a strange appearance.

Jiang proceeded to dip his finger in the sauce and taste it but immediately felt a burning sensation in his mouth. In an attempt to figure out what happened to the sauce, Jiang began reviewing the restaurant’s surveillance footage. The footage showed one of the employees, 54-year-old Margarito Padilla, kneeling next to the lye drain cleaner before entering the area where the sauce was kept.

However, without seeing Padilla actually tamper with the sauce, he wanted to get further proof, so he made a formal announcement to all the restaurant’s employees about the sauce tampering and told them he would be contacting law enforcement. When Padilla spoke up, asking Jiang not to call the police, his suspicions were confirmed that Padilla was, in fact, the culprit.

Law enforcement was brought in, and while Padilla maintained his innocence at first, he later confessed to the tampering and stated his actions were a result of being angry with Jiang over unfair working conditions.

Padilla was arrested on-site and charged with a first-degree felony for introducing a chemical into a food or drink. He was sentenced to seven years in prison, followed by eight years of probation.[8]


2 Wasabi-Covered Pants

Why Does Wasabi Burn Your Nose?

On June 8, 2012, 22-year-old John McGuinness of Marston Mills, Massachusetts, and his unnamed girlfriend were at the Fox Hole Bar watching the Boston Celtics game. When they were on their way home, McGuinness’s girlfriend received a text message from a male friend, making McGuinness angry.

The verbal argument continued between the couple throughout the duration of the drive home until McGuinness’s girlfriend dropped him off. Shortly after leaving, however, she received a text message from McGuinness stating he was going to throw out her $200 pair of jeans.

McGuinness’s girlfriend raced back to his residence in hopes of saving her jeans, but little did she know that McGuinness had covered them in wasabi sauce.

When she arrived, McGuinness forced down her car window and grabbed her cell phone, which led his girlfriend to exit the vehicle. McGuinness then hit her in the face with the pants, getting wasabi sauce in her eyes. He then poured more wasabi sauce into her car before fleeing the scene.

McGuinness was arrested and charged with assault with a deadly weapon, but the case was later dismissed after a witness failed to appear.[9]

1 Mayonnaise Murder

Upon returning home from shopping on September 28, 2019, an unnamed couple from Aliwal North in South Africa began drinking.

However, as the wife was cooking, an argument broke out between the couple, and the husband hit her in the head with a knobkerrie, a wooden club with a knob on the end. In retaliation, the wife then threw a jar of mayonnaise at her husband, but when she did, a shard of glass cut his arm, and he began bleeding excessively.

A call was then placed to emergency medical services, but the husband refused treatment for his injuries. Yet even after his injury, the couple continued their alcohol-induced evening before finally going to bed.

Unfortunately, the next morning, the wife woke up to find her husband dead. She was arrested for his murder.[10]

fact checked by Darci Heikkinen

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