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Police: Wendy's chili finger identified


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Police: Wendy's chili finger identified

SAN JOSE, California (AP) -- Police say the finger that a woman found in a bowl of chili came from an associate of her husband's who lost the digit in an industrial accident.

"The jig is up. The puzzle pieces are beginning to fall into place," Police Chief Rob Davis said.

He said authorities "positively confirmed that this subject was in fact the source of the fingertip."

The man is from Nevada and lost a part of his finger in an accident last December, Davis said. His identity was traced through a lead made to a Wendy's hot line, he said.

Davis said authorities "positively confirmed that this subject was in fact the source of the fingertip."

Anna Ayala, the 39-year-old woman who said she found the finger, was arrested last month at her suburban Las Vegas home.

Ayala maintains she bit down on a 1 1/2 inch-long finger fragment while dining March 22 with her family at a Wendy's in San Jose. She has denied placing the digit in her bowl.

She hired a lawyer and filed a claim against the franchise owner, but dropped the legal fight shortly after police searched her home.

Ayala, who has maintained her innocence, faces a maximum seven-year sentence if convicted of larceny charges, and at least another 16 months if convicted of unrelated charges that she allegedly bilked a woman $11,000 over a soured real estate deal two years ago.

Ayala has been involved in nearly a dozen legal battles, including a sexual harassment suit against an employer, an auto dealer over a car and even another fast-food chain for food poisoning.

Copyright 2005 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.


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