Nothing ruins a holiday meal like food poisoning.
Sheriff Lupe Valdez and dozens of her employees found that out last weekend when they became violently ill after a feast at the Elks Lodge in DeSoto.
On Wednesday, Assistant Chief Deputy Joe Costa emailed the county health department to report the illnesses, which affected the sheriff's number two man, Jesse Flores, as well as Chief Deputy Edgar McMillan.
The incident spoiled McMillan's retirement party on Wednesday. The 36-year department veteran had to call in from home to thank the attendees, since it was too late to cancel the event.
Zach Thompson, the county's Health and Human Services Director, said his department is testing food samples but that it's still too early to tell whether E. coli or something else was to blame.
The DeSoto health department is also assisting in the investigation.
Thompson didn't know what kind of food was served and whether or not it was catered or provided by the lodge. No one is at the lodge offices at the moment. The sheriff's spokeswoman is supposed to get back to us with more details.
Thompson said about 50 people attended the sheriff's holiday party on Saturday and 28 people became ill on Sunday and Monday.
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