SAN JOSE (CBS SF) – The attorney for a woman released without charges Thursday after being accused of placing two bottles of poisoned orange juice into a Starbucks refrigerator in San Jose said her arrest was “a case of mass hysteria.”
Dennis Lempert spoke to reporters outside the San Jose home of Ramineh “Romi” Behbehanian, 50, after she was released from jail early Thursday evening and questioned whether witnesses actually saw his client place the bottles in the refrigerator and whether the bottles contained poison at all.
Behbehanian had been arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and felony poisoning after a customer said she swapped out two bottles of orange juice with her own tainted bottles that she brought to the store in a Starbucks bag on Monday afternoon.
Police said the fire department responded to the coffee shop, located at 6009 Snell Ave., and determined that the bottles allegedly contained lethal doses of rubbing alcohol.
The case remains under review and Behbehanian has not been charged yet.
“We were not able to file charges because the investigation is not complete,” Santa Clara County Deputy District Attorney Luis Ramos said.
He said prosecutors either had to charge Behbehanian or release her by Thursday afternoon.
“It does not mean that charges will or will not be filed. There was just not enough time under the penal code to charge her,” he said.