Lakeland, Florida middle school teacher Simone Paolercio is facing a battery charge after she threw an assortment of food items back through a drive-thru window following a dispute with a McDonald’s employee, according to police.
The incident, which was captured by a restaurant surveillance camera (video below), happened around 9:45 Saturday morning at a McDonald’s in Lakeland. Paolercio ordered about $20 worth of food when she got into a dispute with a worker at the drive-thru window.
Jessica Balderas, a McDonald’s worker, told cops that “there was a disagreement over two hashbrowns." Paolercio reportedly became “irritated” and “wanted them to take the food back and refund her money.”
After a manager arrived to speak with Paolercio, the teacher tossed some of the food items back through the drive-thru window when refused a refund. Paolercio later admitted that she "chucked it" through the window when her refund demand was rejected.
Some of the airborne food struck Balderas in the face and chest, according to investigators.
When Paolercio denied hitting Balderas with the breakfast items, a deputy advised that footage showed "a hashbrown fly out of the bag and through the air." Paolercio, cops noted, "said she could not argue with the surveillance video."
Paolercio, pictured in the above mug shot, “fled the area in her vehicle” following the confrontation. After being tracked to her residence, she was arrested on the misdemeanor charge.
A sixth grade teacher at Lakeland Highlands Middle School, Paolercio was booked into the county jail Saturday, and released from custody yesterday.
In a Facebook posting yesterday, Paolercio’s husband threatened legal action over his wife's arrest. “I will never step foot in a McDonald's again,” wrote Chris Paolercio, a long-haul trucker. "A lawsuit will be coming for what they did."