Exclusive: Woman says strange tasting slush made her violently ill

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - By Morgan Chesky - bio | email

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - Keri Mitcham, 18, says she was in a hospital room an hour after drinking a strange tasting slush from the Tyler Sonic Drive-In at 5611 South Broadway in Tyler. Authorities confirmed the restaurant has been temporarily shut down after health inspectors looked into the matter.

Eight months pregnant and with her two year son old in tow, Mitcham needed to cool off so she went to her favorite place for her favorite drink, a cranberry lime slush. "I mean I go like every day. I always get one," said Mitcham. "No smaller than a large...sometimes two."

This time she settled on a Route 44 and when the first came without lime, a second was soon brought out.

"This one didn't taste right, it didn't smell right," said Mitcham, "so I quit drinking it about ten minutes, fifteen minutes, but apparently that's all it took."

It was all it took, Mitcham says, after leaving Sonic for her body to start feeling very different.

"My face got really hot, I got a headache, [and] I got really lightheaded kind of dizzy."

When her sister suspected the drink she took off the lid. "It was really foamy, it was very soapy," said Mitcham, "Not once have I ever seen a layer of bumps or foam on top of a slush."

An hour later Mitcham was laying in a hospital bed. Looking for answers, she contacted police and the health department who conducted an investigation.

A statement from Sonic Headquarters soon followed, shown in an excerpt below:

"The health department's inspection this week found no issues relating to chemicals or hazardous materials in the drive-in...Local police have also informed the franchisee that the cause of any potential illness is unknown."

Thursday Sonic's doors were closed after officials found other issues requiring it stay shut down until repairs are completed and when business returns, Mitcham says she'll still stop by.

"I just wanted a slush, I still love Sonic," said Mitcham,"I don't know if I got sick. I'm pregnant or something like the drink affected me quicker, I don't know, but I know that it did affect me and it made me very sick for a really long time and it was miserable."

Tyler police are continuing to investigate the case. Sonic's corporate offices say the owner operator of the Sonic in question is cooperating with authorities.

We will be in touch with authorities for any additional information.

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