By Michelle Manchir and Adam Sege
5:31 PM CDT, April 9, 2014
No trace of alcohol was found in 13 children transported to hospitals this week after a waitress at a South Side pizzeria served alcohol to their table by mistake, police said Wednesday.
Police will not be investigating any further the incident that happened about 9:40 p.m. Tuesday at Home Run Inn in the Little Village neighborhood, police sources said, because it was an accident and the waitress admitted to the mistake. The restaurant was not cited.
Staff at the restaurant, in the 4200 block of West 31st Street, referred all comments Wednesday to Daniel Costello, the president of the Home Run Inn Restaurant Group, who said in a statement “we are currently working with staff to conduct an internal investigation to discern the facts of what occurred.”
One parent who said she was part of the birthday party at the restaurant Tuesday night said she’s still disturbed by what happened.
Neyante Eggleston, 29, said her 6-year-old son had been drinking from cup that was believed to be fruit punch, the beverage that the whole table had ordered.
While he was not among the children taken to a hospital, Eggleston said the boy was not feeling well Wednesday morning and stayed home from kindergarten. She said she was not sure what drink was actually in the cup, but that she could smell alcohol in it.
Eggleston said she saw many of the children at the party, mostly under 10 years old, drinking from the cup before waitresses and bus boys started picking the cups they had served back up.
The children were taken Tuesday in good-to-fair condition to Stroger and Mount Sinai hospitals, officials said, where all were treated and released. Police could not say what tests were performed on the children to determine alcohol consumption. Eggleston said she did not see any children take a Breathalyzer test.
Before the incident occurred, Eggleston said she had been talking to the waitress and found out she was new to the job.
“We all make mistakes it’s just all about how you correct that,” Eggleston said, adding she was unsure whether any of the parents had filed police reports about the incident.
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