Coronavirus: Man claiming to have COVID-19 spits on deputies, says he hopes they die, officials say

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

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Man who claimed to have COVID-19 reportedly spits on deputies

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

A man charged with spitting on Pierce County, Washington, sheriff's deputies while claiming to have the coronavirus cursed at the judge and tried to walk out of the room where he was making his video court appearance Wednesday, saying he couldn't afford the $80,000 bail.

"Coronavirus got everybody [expletive] locked down. You can't do [expletive]," Joshua Gorham shouted.

According to Seattle's KIRO-TV, the 32-year-old Gorham is charged with assault after allegedly leading deputies on a high-speed chase. Once he was stopped, Gorham allegedly spit on deputies trying to arrest him, said he had COVID-19 and hoped the deputies would get it from him and die, authorities said.

“Unfortunately, this is the fourth or fifth time we’ve had this happen since COVID,” said Pierce County Sheriff’s spokesman detective Ed Troyer.

Gorham was charged with assault in the third degree for allegedly spitting on the deputies and claiming to be infected with the coronavirus, even though there’s no proof he tested positive for the disease.

“Spitting on someone is an assault, but the threat of giving somebody a disease, especially with the virus, and then intentionally doing it and then saying, ‘I hope you die’ brings it to another level,” said Troyer.

Gorham also faces charges of eluding police and malicious mischief and is wanted on warrants in Thurston County.

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