During an investigation into the child’s illness, health officials learned that on August 26, she had had consumed a Topps brand quarter pound beef patty cooked on the grill at home. Most of the patties that came in the package of twelve frozen hamburgers had been eaten; however, two uncooked patties were in her parents’ freezer.
E. coli O157:H7 was later cultured in the two uncooked, frozen, beef patties. Pulsed Field Gel Electrophoresis (PFGE) analysis of the meat isolate and the child’s isolate showed the two were a genetic match, confirming that the meat was the source of her infection with E. coli O157:H7.
On November 3, 2005, Marler Clark's E. coli lawyers filed a lawsuit in Albany County Supreme Court on behalf of the eight-year-old child and her family. The case was resolved in August, 2007.