Gerrity's supermarket forced to trash $35,000 in food after woman's coughing 'prank'

Gerrity's Supermarket employees work to clean and disinfect the store after a woman coughed all over food

The woman walked into Gerrity's Supermarket in Scranton, Pa., on Wednesday and starting "violently coughing and spitting" on the produce, store manager Leonard Karabon said, according to a police complaint obtained by the Times Tribune newspaper. Earlier this week, a New Jersey man who police said purposely coughed on a grocery store employee and said he had coronavirus was charged with making "terroristic threats". He added that after police escorted the customer out, the store had no choice but to throw out the products she came in contact with, because it's not worth taking chances with the health and well-being of customers. Working closely with the Hanover Township health inspector, we identified every area that she was in, we disposed of the product and thoroughly cleaned and disinfected everything.

He thanked his team for getting the woman out of the store as quickly as possible and contacting the police.

Fasula said the total damage done in the "twisted prank" is estimated to be well over $35,000, and he expects his insurance rates to rise because of it.

"Today was a very challenging day", Joe Fasula, of Gerrity's Supermarket, wrote.

"The suspect has been identified and is being evaluated at a local hospital for a mental health evaluation".

Township police said the criminal charges were filed against Cirko who they say "intentionally contaminated produce/meat/merchandise for sale" at Gerrity's Supermarket on Sans Souci Parkway on Wednesday.

"I'm also absolutely sick to my stomach about the loss of food".

Federal law enforcement recently announced it's considering terrorism charges for anyone purposely spreading's unclear if this disgusting woman has coronavirus, though. Fasula wrote. "While it is always a shame when food is wasted, in these times when so many people are anxious about the security of our food supply, it is even more disturbing".

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say the potentially fatal coronavirus can spread via "respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes" on nearby people or objects.

"The only silver lining to this travesty is that it gave us the unfortunate opportunity to test our protocols and demonstrate how seriously we take your safety", he said. At least 15 store employees and members of the Hanover Township's health department worked furiously to clean and disinfect the store.

Authorities said they will pursue aggressive action against the woman, according to the post.

We'll never understand why, in a time of crisis, a human would do this to fellow humans.



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