Orange County Police Officer Pepper Sprayed Teen's Pizza

A 19-year-old got sick after eating a pizza allegedly pepper sprayed by a police officer during a traffic stop.

An Orange County sheriff's deputy stands accused of pepper spraying a teenager's pizza during a routine traffic stop. The still-unidentified 19-year-old victim was being written up for a traffic violation in Laguna Hills when Officer Juan Tavera arrived and allegedly reached into the backseat and secretly pepper sprayed the teen's pizza. The teen and his friends got sick after consuming the pizza later that day. 

Once the teen contacted the Orange Country Sheriff's Department and recounted the incident, Tavera was charged with misdemeanor assault or battery by a public officer. Some routine details are still missing, such as, say, what exactly Tavera's motivation was. Tavera, a six year veteran of the force, is due in court today, and if convicted could face up to one year in jail. 

Rod Bastanmehr is a freelance writer in New York City. Follow him on Twitter @rodb.