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Woman sentenced for placing staple in meatloaf

A Barbourville food service worker was sentenced to a year of home incarceration Monday for placing a metal staple into a batch of processed meatloaf that was to be distributed to a national restaurant chain, federal prosecutors said.

Joreen Crawford, 27, pleaded guilty in May to tampering with a consumer product in January 2007, the U.S. Attorney's Office in Lexington said. A U.S. district judge in London sentenced her to time served, home incarceration and ordered Crawford to pay $1,200 in restitution.

Crawford told authorities that she was hoping a co-worker would get blamed for the staple and get fired. The maker of the meatloaf, whom prosecutors declined to identify, had to recall recall a 3,570 pound shipment of processed meatloaf.

"Miss Crawford's reckless actions created a significant risk to the safety of others," Assistant U.S. Attorney Sam Dotson said in a released statement. "Fortunately, because of the swift response by the defendant's employer and the (U.S. Department of Agriculture), the staple was recovered before the meatloaf was ever circulated for consumption to the general public."