Michael Lallana, 34, was convicted last spring of two misdemeanor counts of battery for putting semen in his co-worker’s water bottle twice, which she unknowingly drank.
They met while working at Northwestern Mutual Financial Network in Newport Beach.
It was the second time the woman drank from the bottle in 2010 when she became suspicious of the taste and sent it to a private lab to be tested.
The woman filed a report, which led to an investigation and Lallana’s arrest.
Lallana was sentenced to six months in jail and three years probation and was ordered to register as a sex offender; his attorney appealed the conviction. His criminal defense attorney argued on appeal that an essential element of battery is touching and there was no touching in this particular case. He also argued that there was insufficient evidence to find that the battery was committed for sexual gratification.
The appellate panel of judges cited a case in Missouri in which a woman unknowingly ingested semen in her drink. The ruling for that case was that the woman’s drinking mug counted as physical contact in the case.
The judges also argued that there was plenty of evidence to convict Lallana of the crime for sexual gratification and cited police interviews in which the man said he found the victim “good looking” and imagined her drinking out of the bottle.
The conviction was upheld.
Lallana’s defense lawyer stated that he intends to take the matter to a higher court.