Someone playing a prank urinated into the can of coffee grounds and later smeared clumps of feces into the coffee machine at the Anaconda, Montana courthouse.
County employees who drank the coffee had complained that it tasted “really bad.”
Police chief Tim Barkell says the person could face felony assault charges.
Only two county employees drank unknowingly the coffee contaminated with urine. The two are being tested for hepatitis.
On June 7, employees had remarked that the coffee tasted “really bad.”
Heather Edwards, a county employee, said she detected a strong smell of urine in the coffee and found that someone had urinated into the can of grounds.
Four days later, Edwards discovered that someone had smeared feces into the coffee machine and left feces behind her desk.
She said: “I was just so disturbed. If the person is sick enough to go to that measure, what else are they capable of?”
Fortunately, nobody drank from the coffee.
She remarked: “Had we served that to the public, we could have had a whole bunch of victims.”
Police say the person who committed the crime probably had the keys to the courthouse and the office of the chief executive.
The coffee machine and grounds were kept in the printer room of the chief executive’s office. Only a few of the county employees had the keys, but police are considering the possibility that someone made copies.
When later, the staff were cleaning up, they found a Styrofoam cup stained with feces. The cup was sent to the state crime lab for fingerprint analysis.