Man Charged After Eating Peanut Butter Sandwich Near Elementary School

By Scott Salad

Published December 13th, 2015

The Gifted Children's Academy on Louse Road in Bethlehem, NY.

BETHLEHEM — A National Grid employee working to restore power to parts of Albany County was arrested Friday after he was spotted eating a peanut butter sandwich near an elementary school.

First Line Manager Brad Mustard of Watervliet was taken into custody after several people reported suspicious activity in the vicinity of The Gifted Children's Academy on Louse Road.

On a 911 transcript obtained by The Smudge, Marylyn Chambers, a distraught mother of two children with peanut allergies, can be heard desperately urging authorities to respond.

“Please, HURRY! [sobbing] There's a man [sobbing] and he's was just sitting in his truck, [heavy sobbing/whimpering] in front of my kids elementary school... and he's eating peanut butter!!! [incoherent screaming]

The school was put on lockdown as law enforcement agencies rushed to the scene. When they arrived, Mustard — who claimed he was on his lunch break and minding his own business — was asked to vacate the area. When he resisted, he was tasered by officers and then taken into custody.

Principal Dolores Flerch thanked police for helping to avert a major crisis.

“Ninety percent of our student body is allergic to peanuts. Had that man wandered any closer to the school with his sandwich, who knows what would have happened?”

Mustard's arrest comes a week after a Bethlehem mother was officially shunned by parents and teachers at the reclusive academy for disregarding the school's zero-tolerance policy toward unmarked edibles.

Marsha Cluzzy, 27, said her life has been turned upside-down by the universal brush-off she's received since sending her two children to school with homemade brownies.

“Yeah, again, they didn't even have nuts in them, so I'm not sure what all the hostility is about,” said Cluzzy. “But if they want to keep shaming me then I guess I just have to ride it out. Sucks though.”

Large parts of Albany County are still in the dark as National Grid field crew personnel — the bulk of which say they really enjoy peanut butter and jelly sandwiches while sitting in their trucks on their lunch breaks — meet with union officials to discuss how best to handle the issue.


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