TARGET 8: Former convenience store employee complains of cockroaches

8 months 1 week 20 hours ago Thursday, November 09 2017 Nov 9, 2017 Thursday, November 09, 2017 6:11:00 PM CST November 09, 2017 in Target 8
By: Zara McDowell, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Casey's General Store on Clark Lane is receiving criticism on Facebook after a former employee's post went viral.

Keri Lawson, a former Casey's General Store employee, said in her Facebook post: "I worked here for MAYBE 2 months... On the third week, I started complaining about the **COCKROACHES** and various work conditions."

KOMU 8 News investigated that complaint, obtaining inspection records from the county. 

The health inspections from the Boone County Health Department showed that Casey's on Clark Lane received two complaints about the store in the past week. One on November 3 and another on November 8. The health department sent a health inspector each time it received a complaint.

Kala Wekenborg-Tomka, the Boone County Health Department's Environmental Public Health Supervisor, said it treats every complaint the same as a routine inspection and said, "We respond to every complaint we receive." 

On November 3, a health inspector found one critical violation and two non-critical violations during an inspection. The health inspection stated: "Food debris and dead pests in hand sink near fryer, food debris on floor and in floor of WIC [walk-in cooler], an attractant of pests, and dead pests on ceiling, floor, and hand sink near fryer."

"They would crawl at my feet while I'm working, so I was constantly watching where I was touching," Lawson told KOMU 8 News during an interview.

Prior to Friday's inspection, the last inspection was on February 8, 2017. Since January 15, 2015, Casey's on Clark Lane has received seven critical violations and 10 non-critical violations. 

On October 5, 2015, Casey's had a critical violation for "Unapproved pest spray in kitchen."

KOMU 8 News called Casey's General Store. An employee and manager said, "no comment."

Wekenborg-Tomka said the store or restaurant does not know ahead of time when the health department is coming for a routine inspection.

"We've received complaints about any type of food establishment. I wouldn't say it's unique to Casey's, and we respond to them all the same," Wekenborg-Tomka said.

Lawson said the cockroaches got progressively worse as she was working. "There's a cooler lid where your pizza condiments are, and there's a little opening and one came up right out from there."

Lawson said she was asked to put Borax in the cooler vents and bug spray on the baseboards. Lawson showed KOMU 8 a note she said a manager gave her: "Keri, When  you close the kitchen tonight underneath the white cabinet is some bug spray, will you spray behind everything and open that vent on the prep table and put Borax in there. Ask the clean to close person to spray underneath the cabinets, not while customer are here though... Thank you XXXXX I appreciate you."

"We are here to be great educators as regulators. So if you see something, you're part of our eyes and ears of our community and we encourage you to report that to us," Wekenborg-Tomka said.

Wekenborg-Tomka said it takes "8 critical violations, 16 non-critical violations, or a combination of 20 violations" during one visit to close a store like Casey's.

"Our goal is not to close food establishments. It's to ensure that they understand why something is a violation and get them into compliance. So our last resort is closure, if education does not work," Wekenborg-Tomka said.

"They're definitely not a pet you want to keep around. It makes my skin crawl, and I couldn't do it anymore. I couldn't work there anymore," Lawson said.

Lawson said she was hired at Casey's on September 6 and trained at the store on El Chapparel. "That one is very clean."

KOMU 8 News pulled inspection reports from all Casey's stores in Boone County. All had violations, but those on Clark Lane were the most disturbing. Other stores had reports of "Employee eating trail-mix in kitchen, food stored on floor in walk-in freezer, AND pizza boxes directly sitting on floor.

Lawson said managers kept telling her it wouldn't be like this after the re-model in January.

"I do hope that they address it, and I hope that their re-model fixes it. But I don't think it's just a sweep under the rug," Lawson said.

More News

Grid
List
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A man who was shot to death on Sunday after shooting three Kansas City police officers... More >>
6 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 8:33:33 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
MANSFIELD (AP) — The Missouri State Highway Patrol says a trooper who was shot in southwest Missouri has been released... More >>
6 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 8:28:02 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The white former interim police chief of St. Louis is alleging discrimination based on race in... More >>
6 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 8:20:28 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Japanese beetles are swarming mid-Missouri in the tens of thousands, wreaking havoc on gardens, crops and trees. ... More >>
6 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 8:18:00 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) — Donald Trump will visit Missouri next week to deliver his first address as president to the annual... More >>
6 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 8:13:07 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - On Wednesday, Governor Parson issued an executive order putting nearly half of the counties in Missouri under... More >>
6 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 8:12:00 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — A Missouri state representative has unblocked a critic from her Twitter account after he sued. ... More >>
6 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 8:10:32 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A Kansas City-area woman has been charged with letting men rape her 2-year-old daughter. Twenty-five-year-old... More >>
9 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 5:12:46 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
HARRISBURG - A town rocked by tragedy continues to heal after the man responsible for the car crash that killed... More >>
10 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 4:57:00 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
MILLER COUNTY - Deputies arrested a man following an investigation into alleged sexual abuse, and charges were filed in the... More >>
11 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 4:05:32 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY – Different sides reacted Wednesday to the Missouri Supreme Court's ruling in favor of a wind energy project.... More >>
11 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 3:37:00 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri Democratic Party filed an appeal to the ruling from a Cole County judge dismissing a... More >>
13 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 1:59:00 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
FULTON - In the span of one month, law enforcement responded to nine car crashes on Route F between Boone... More >>
13 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 1:40:00 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The man who caused the crash which left a Harrisburg teacher dead pleaded guilty Wednesday. Brandon Brill,... More >>
14 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 12:34:00 PM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
SANTA ANA, CALIFORNIA (AP) — Wet and muddy from their trek across the Mexican border, immigrant children say they sat... More >>
16 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 10:50:00 AM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- The 12 members of a youth soccer team and their coach who spent more than two weeks trapped... More >>
18 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 8:24:00 AM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — A Missouri program aimed at connecting stroke, heart attack and trauma patients with the best care... More >>
18 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 8:17:00 AM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- The owner of the Mandalay Bay hotel says it bears no liability in last year's Las Vegas concert... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, July 18 2018 Jul 18, 2018 Wednesday, July 18, 2018 6:32:00 AM CDT July 18, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 76°
4am 74°
5am 74°
6am 72°
7am 72°