History of arrests precedes 'brown substance' incident at St. Andrews Harris Teeter
A man arrested Sunday and accused of spraying a "brown substance" on produce at a West Ashley Harris Teeter has been arrested at the grocery store several times.
Records of the Al Cannon Detention Center and incident reports provided by the Charleston Police Department show Pau Hang has been arrested at least seven times since he was originally placed on trespass notice from the business on November 24, 2015.
In previous reports, Hang is accused of showing up at the store, cursing at employees and demanding money he said he is owed. He showed up at the store twice in May of this year, with one of those arrests becoming physical with an officer. Hang and an officer "fell to the ground" during that May 4th incident. The report states Hang refused to leave the store, refused to follow commands from the officer and resisted arrest.
Things have now escalated. In what reports indicate is his eighth arrest at the Harris Teeter at 975 Savannah Highway, Pau Hang is accused of contaminating fresh food at the store. Representatives of the North Carolina-based chain of supermarkets say the substance appeared to have been liquefied feces.
The Charleston Police Department is investigating with the assistance of the county health department. Officials say while the type of contaminant has not been confirmed, produce from the store has been pulled from shelves.
"Food safety and quality are paramount to Harris Teeter. We were extremely alarmed and disappointed to learn that today, a disgruntled, former contractor attempted to contaminate food products in the Produce department and Fresh Foods department inside our St. Andrews Shopping Center location," said Harris Teeter communication manager Danna Robinson.
All contaminated food items, which ranged from freshly-baked bread to corn, were discarded, Robinson said.
Prior to a 2 p.m. bond hearing Monday, the 40-year-old had accrued at least $3,877 in fines and bond amounts for his unwanted visits to the Harris Teeter.
While a detective and a representative of Harris Teeter requested no bond, a magistrate judge set Hang's bond at $100,000. Those in court argued Hang had been arrested nine times at the St. Andrews Harris Teeter and said each time there's more anger.
DHEC will inspect the Harris Teeter before the impacted section can reopen. The agency released the following statement"
"Harris Teeter management took action to close contaminated areas and contacted DHEC after the incident.
We have been informed by Harris Teeter management that all contaminated food has been properly discarded and all impacted areas have been cleaned to meet the standards of Regulation 61-25, Retail Food Establishments. As the material is suspected to be fecal matter, the store has been asked to sanitize as if the impacted areas of the store had been impacted by a flood (See the Emergency Action Plan for Retail Food Establishments for more information on flood recovery requirements.).
Our staff will conduct an inspection to verify that the requirements of the regulation are met before the food is sold from impacted areas."
It's unknown why Hang lost his job as a contracted sushi chef at the supermarket. His first arrest. according to jail records, was on November 24, 2015.