Woman in US coughs on food, supermarket discards goods worth $35,000

WION Web Team New Delhi, India Mar 27, 2020, 10.09 AM(IST) Edited By: Bharat Sharma

A general view of a supermarket that is closed to curb the COVID-19 coronavirus from spreading in the Flacq district, Mauritius, on March 25, 2020. Mauritius is under curfew since March 23, 2020 for 11 days to curb the COVID-19 coronavirus from spreading Photograph:( AFP )

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Soon after the staff discovered what was happening, the police were called in who took her into custody

Reports from the US state of Pennsylvania claim that a woman purposely coughed on food items worth $35,000 at a grocery store.

Just yesterday, the United States Department of Justice had said that people who are attempting to intentionally spread coronavirus shall be charged with terrorism.

The woman is expected to face criminal charges, CNN reported.

Also read: Pandemic will cut global investment flows more than feared, says UN

Based on the Facebook post of the grocery chain’s co-owner, the woman coughed not only on produce, but on bakery items, meat, and other food items. 

Soon after the staff discovered what was happening, the police were called in who took her into custody.

According to the police statement, the woman “intentionally contaminated” the food. Once her mental health treatment is complete, criminal charges shall be filed against her.

There’s no clarity on whether the woman is infected with the virus, but she will most probably be tested nevertheless.

Also read: Coronavirus testing kits and ventilators, are they the difference between life and death?

The produce, which amounts to over $35,000 has been discarded by Gerrity Supermarket, where the incident unravelled.

Besides this, everything and area that she came in contact with has been disinfected, as per the co-owner Fasula’s Facebook post.

A cashier wearing a face masks processes a customer's payment at a supermarket on March 26, 2020 in the Portuense district of Rome during the country's lockdown following the COVID-19 new coronavirus pandemic | AFP

Fasula further expressed her displeasure over the wastage of food, especially in a time when the world might face a potential shortage of basic food items, with lockdowns in place all over.

Social media is filled with coronavirus-related pranks, whereby people are licking items at public spots, for instance, a pole in the metro, or coughing purposely to create paranoia. 

In the US city of New Jersey, a man claiming to have coronavirus purposely spat on a grocery store employee. The charges against him mentioned “terroristic threats”.

Also read: Coronavirus outbreak: Global cases cross 530,000; death toll rises to 24,070

The Justice Department had released a memo yesterday, according to which the virus qualifies as a biological agent. “Using COVID-19 as a weapon against Americans” will be perceived as a terrorist threat.

Cases of infections of the deadly coronavirus surpassed 530,000 worldwide on Friday and global deaths rose past 24,000, as COVID-19 spreads across Europe and North America.

Also read: People to be prosecuted under terrorism law, if they intentionally spread coronavirus: US Justice Dept

COVID-19 has now infected more than 350,536 people, according to Johns Hopkins University, and killed at least 15,328 people. Around 122,203 people of that tally have recovered, according to Hopkins.

According to the news reports, The United States has taken the grim title of the country with the most coronavirus infections and reported a record surge in unemployment.

In the United States, more than 83,000 people have tested positive for COVID-19, edging out Italy, which has reported the most deaths, and China, where the virus was first detected in December in the metropolis of Wuhan.