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Draper Rancherito's closed after video emerges showing employee urinating in food prep area

By Jen Riess, | Updated - Dec. 15, 2019 at 10:24 p.m. | Posted - Dec. 15, 2019 at 4:27 p.m.

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DRAPER — Rancherito's in Draper is currently closed after a video was posted that showed an employee urinating in a food preparation area.

Robert Talivakola was in the drive-thru Sunday morning when he saw the man urinating and took a video of the unaware employee as he finishes his business and adjusts his pants.

He said he made the video public because he wanted people to be aware.

"I love Rancherito's. I've eaten there many times," said Talivakola. "It's just kind of disturbing when you see this. You kind of don't want to go back. You kind of just like want to stay away. I honestly don't think I'm going to eat at that location anymore."

The video was viewed over 70,000 times on Facebook before it was taken down.

Nicholas Rupp with the Salt Lake County Health Department said he received an online complaint of an employee urinating in the Draper restaurant.

Investigators visited the restaurant at 12250 S. State and "confirmed that a food handler there exhibited a willful disregard for food safety and acted inappropriately in a food preparation area."

The investigation also "concluded definitively" that the video was of an employee at the Draper Rancherito's location, Rupp said.

The health department closed the restaurant for the area to be sanitized and revoked the employee's food handler permit.

The chain's manager, Perla Lee, said that employee has been fired and they are working to regain their customers' trust.

"This was just one person, and it does not represent who we are or what we do," Lee said. "So we definitely want to make sure they know that and that our customers are a priority."

The health department said the establishment may reopen after appropriate management meets with the Food Protection Bureau and undergoes a "complete reinspection, including verification of employee training," which could be as soon as tomorrow.

"Everything is being sanitized, every single thing," Lee said.

Contributing: Tania Dean, KSL TV

Jen Riess

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