PALESTINE, TX–A Palestine woman is dead tonight from a fast acting bacterial infection after she drank a sample glass of city tap water during a town hall meeting at city hall focused on citizen complaints about water safety.
Teresa Johnson, 32, was the only resident that drank sample water offered by Public Works Director Tim Perry. Immediately following her death, Johnson’s remains were moved to the sidewalk in front of city hall while the town hall continued.
“The water is safe,” Perry said, “I’m sure we can easily explain what happened here today, but we shouldn’t prematurely assume that city water isn’t safe to drink.”
Perry, who was buying a bottled water from the vending machine when he was approached by reporters, declined further comment.
The meeting was continuing as of press time with city staff indicating they would dispose of the body once over.
“Look, we don’t need to create any panic, and obviously, Ms. Johnson isn’t in any kind of a hurry,” Mayor Bob Herrington said to horrified citizens in attendance at the meeting in response to questions about what would be done to help Johnson.
“Whatever you do, do not go near that body without protection,” Herrington said.