Woman who purposely coughed on £30k of food arrested as terrorist using biological agent

Bosses at the store in the US said a woman carried out what they called a “very twisted prank” which forced owners to discard all of the items she came into contact with, which amounted to $35,000 (£28,500) of goods. Joe Fasula, the shops’ co-owner said throwing away the food made him feel sick to his stomach. The prank comes at a time when customers are rushing to stores to purchase groceries amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The woman walked into Gerrity’s Supermarket in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, at about 2.20pm on Wednesday before carrying out the apparent prank.

One of the shop workers noticed the woman coughing and spitting on the food items, prompting security to quickly escort her out of the store and contact the police.

She is also understood to have attempted to steal a 12 pack of beer.

Mr Fasula said he had little doubt the woman’s actions were intended as a joke, but he felt compelled to throw out the affected food and thoroughly disinfect the shelves over concerns for the health of other customers.

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Mr Fasula said: “The woman entered the store and proceeded to purposely cough on our fresh produce, and a small section of our bakery, meat case and grocery

“While there is little doubt this woman was doing it as a very twisted prank, we will not take any chances with the health and well-being of our customers.

“We had no choice but to throw out all product she came in contact with.

“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.

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“I’m also absolutely sick to my stomach about the loss of food.

“While it is always a shame when food is wasted, in these times when so many people are worried about the security of our food supply, it is even more disturbing.”

On Twitter, the store added: “It truly saddens us. We are doing our best to provide everyone a safe environment & the items they need during this time including our seniors & those who are immunocompromised.”

A 35-year-old woman has been arrested in connection with the incident.

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Police will test her for coronavirus.

Hanover Township Police Department said the woman had been charged with terrorist threats, threatening to use a “biological agent”, criminal mischief, attempting to commit retail theft, and disorderly conduct.

They said in a statement: “Police were called to the business after a woman entered the store making verbal threats that she was sick while intentionally coughing and spitting saliva/bile on produce/meat/merchandise.

“The woman continued this behaviour in several aisles before attempting to steal a 12 pack of beer as she was being ordered to leave the store by employees.”

On Friday the US overtook China as the country with the most confirmed cases, with more than 85,500 positive tests.

According to the latest figures collated by Johns Hopkins University, the US has overtaken China (81,782 cases) and Italy (80,589).

But the US does not have the greatest death toll, at 1,300 COVID-19 related fatalities, the US still trails behind Italy (8,215), Spain (4,365) and China (3,292).

How are you coping with the coronavirus lockdown? What are you doing to keep yourself entertained in these difficult times? How are you helping your local community, or has someone in the local community been helping you? Send your stories, pictures and videos to [email protected]

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Coronavirus is changing how we hold funerals: ‘another layer of grief’

Removing someone from a funeral simply because they travelled to the U.S. wasn’t an expected part of the job for Jeff Hagel, president of McInnis and Holloway funeral homes in Calgary, Alta.

That’s now become one of a multitude of changes to policy Hagel’s funeral homes have implemented across the city as a response to the coronavirus outbreak in Canada.

Along with drastically reducing the number of people allowed to attend ceremonies, firming handwashing and sanitizing policies, setting up video streaming and scaling back staff hours — people who work in these types of industries are learning how to adapt.

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Lockdown: Which countries are in lockdown? How many people?

Coronavirus has prompted several countries to implement lockdown measures from national quarantines to school closures. More than a third of the planet’s population is expected to be on lockdown now. Express.co.uk has compiled a list of which countries are on lockdown right now.

Around the globe, there have been more than 487,562 cases of coronavirus.

Italy and Spain have now reported more deaths than China, where the virus was first detected.

India became the latest country to order a nationwide lockdown with Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying “many families will be destroyed forever” if the country fails to get its coronavirus outbreak under control over the next three weeks.

India has a population of 1.3 billion people and has asked people to stay home for 21 days although the country has only confirmed 695 cases, 14 of which have died.

The unprecedented measure was undertaken by the government to protect the country from the worst.


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The following countries have implemented full or partial lockdowns now:

  • South Africa
  • New Zealand
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Colombia
  • India
  • The UK
  • Australia
  • China
  • Jordan
  • Argentina
  • Israel
  • Belgium
  • France
  • Spain
  • Italy
  • Kuwait
  • Ireland
  • Norway
  • Denmark
  • El Salvador
  • Indonesia
  • Germany
  • Portugal
  • Czech Republic
  • Slovenia
  • Poland
  • Lebanon
  • Russia
  • Greece.

India, China, France, Italy, New Zealand, Poland and the UK have implemented the world’s largest and most restrictive mass quarantines.

China implemented a quarantine in Wuhan City and later extended it to 15 other cities.

On March 18, China reported there had been no new local cases for the first time since the outbreak began.

Now it is expected China will lift the lockdown in Wuhan on April 8.

Wuhan City alone has a population of 11 million, with tens of millions more people in nearby cities who were also put under quarantine.

France implemented a full lockdown, banning public gatherings and walks outside on March 16.

French citizens to take public transit only if absolutely necessary.

Reportedly France’s Council of Scientists is recommending a six week lockdown in the country.

France has an estimated population of 65.27m.

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Italy, with an estimated population of 60.48m, went into a nationwide lockdown on March 10 which restricts most aspects of daily life.

All large sporting events, events, schools and universities, museums, cultural centers, swimming pools, and spas have been closed.

Public transportation and airports are still operating but only essential travel is allowed.

New Zealand has instituted a mandatory 14 day quarantine for all countries entering the country and this week went into a month-long full lockdown.

The lockdown will only be partially eased after a month if case trends slow in New Zealand which is home to 4.82m.

The current population of Poland is around 37.85m and these nationals have seen drastic lockdown measures across the country.

As of Tuesday the government has limited the number of people allowed to take part in religious services including funerals to five.

Additionally, the government has cut the number of people permitted to ride public buses and trams at one time to avoid crowds endangering health.

The UK rolled out a nationwide lockdown on Monday.

The lockdown is expected to last at least three weeks and means you are no longer permitted to leave your home except for the following reasons:

  • Shopping for essentials
  • One form of exercise per day
  • Medical need or to provide care or assistance to a vulnerable person
  • Travel to and from work.

How many people are on lockdown?

The world population stands at 7.8 billion as of March 2020.

As of March 26, a third of the world’s population is now living under some form of lockdown due to coronavirus.

More than three billion people in almost 70 countries and territories have been asked to stay at home.

But as testing is not readily available in many places, this number is likely to be much higher.

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New York City subway ‘surfer’ takes COVID-19 social distancing to next level

Well, that’s one way to socially distance during the novel coronavirus outbreak.

A shocking video was shared to Twitter on Wednesday by social media user @progressiveact, showing a New York City man hanging from the side of a moving subway.

“This is crazy,” the tweet reads.

“Guy riding outside the train hanging on window … The BS us workers have to deal with during this pandemic.”

A mask-wearing subway rider inside the car appears to be reasoning with the man hanging onto the window, encouraging him to “hold on” as the subway goes over a bridge.

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Coronavirus: Thursday update from Manitoba health officials

Manitoba health officials will update ‘Tobans Thursday on the latest information about the novel coronavirus situation in the province.

The press conference will happen at 11 a.m. Global News will livestream the conference here.

There are currently 35 probable and confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Manitoba. Wednesday, the Manitoba government asked businesses for help in manufacturing supplies that will be needed as cases continue to rise.

Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:

Health officials caution against all international travel. Returning travellers are asked to self-isolate for 14 days in case they develop symptoms and to prevent spreading the virus to others.

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Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.

To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out.

For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.

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The best video call apps for large meetings, parties during coronavirus outbreak

Although we might feel physically isolated during the novel coronavirus outbreak, we are not socially isolated thanks to technology.

In fact, mental health experts are encouraging people to seek quality social support during this time, and keep in touch with others through video calls, texts or social media.

“It helps to share our thoughts and feelings,” said Dr. Katy Kamkar, a Toronto-based clinical psychologist.

Kamkar suggests that people in self-isolation virtually participate in social events with their loved ones, such as birthday celebrations or even dinner.

Even video chatting with co-workers is important because working from home can get lonely, and we all need social and emotional support.

Here are some video chatting platforms you can use to maintain connection, whether it be with family members or colleagues, while physically distancing during the outbreak.


What it is: FaceTime is a video chat platform available on Apple devices such as iPhones, iPads and Macintosh computers that run Mac OS X 10.6.6 and later.

Price: FaceTime is usually pre-installed on Apple devices and is free of charge. All you need is an AppleID, Wi-Fi and 3G or 4G connections.

Capacity: You can add up to 32 people at the same time using Group FaceTime.

Good for: The app supports any iOS device with a forward-facing camera and Macintosh computers with a webcam.

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Peterborough Petes’ goalie Hunter Jones signs NHL entry-level deal with Minnesota Wild

Peterborough Petes’ goalie Hunter Jones is one step closer to the NHL after signing a three-year, entry-level contract with the Minnesota Wild.

The Wild’s general manager, Bill Guerin, announced the signing on Thursday. Jones, a native of Brantford, Ont., was the Wild’s second-round selection (59th overall) in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft held in Vancouver. He also attended the Wild’s development and training camps in 2019.

Jones, a six-foot-four-inch, 198-pound netminder, appeared in 49 games for the Petes in the 2019-20 season, earning a 2.75 goals against average, 0.913 save percentage, and 31-14-2-1 record that included four shutouts.

He was named the OHL Goaltender of the Month for October 2019 and played for Team OHL in the 2019 CIBC Canada Russia Series.


Jones is the first Pete to be drafted by the Wild, but joins 2000-03 Petes’ alumnus Eric Staal in Minnesota’s system.

“It’s a pretty exciting day — my phone is blowing up and I’m sure I’ll make it through,” he told Pondcast, the Wild’s official podcast stream. “It’s obviously the first step in getting to play for the Wild and getting into their system. I’ve been working for this ever since I got drafted last summer.”

Jones said throughout the regular season, the Wild was keeping tabs on his play and progress.

The Canadian Hockey League announced on Monday announced the cancellation of the remainder of junior hockey’s regular season, playoffs and the Memorial Cup championship.

Jones called the cancellations “bittersweet” but said the signing was the “sweetest thing” he’s had in a long time.

“It’s pretty surreal,” he said.

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B.C. health-care professionals warn about use of unproven COVID-19 treatments and medications

A group of B.C. health-care professionals has issued a warning about the threats posed by unproven treatments and medications for COVID-19.

Contrary to information spreading on social media, a proven treatment for COVID-19 does not exist, says a joint statement from College of Pharmacists of BC, College of Physicians and Surgeons of BC, and BC College of Nursing Professionals.

They also warn against the use of unproven therapies for COVID-19, such as hydroxychloroquine, chloroquine, azithromycin, lopinavir/ritonavir, and colchicine.

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They go on to say a surge in interest in unproven COVID-19 treatments could lead to a shortage of drugs that could be used to help patients with other conditions.

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Moncton researchers study if COVID-19 detection is possible with X-ray images, expert cautions use

A team of researchers at the Université de Moncton is working on a new online form of detection for COVID-19 by way of artificial intelligence, but one expert warns about how far the model can go.

X-ray imaging of lungs can detect the novel coronavirus, says Moulay Akhloufi, the computer science professor and head of the Prime (Perception, Robotics and Intelligent Machines) group at the university.

“Deep learning,” he says, is a way of processing data, such as medical images using artificial intelligence or AI.

But not everyone agrees. The president of the Canadian Society of Thoracic Radiology, for example, says the AI model can’t be counted on to detect COVID-19.

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China reports second consecutive day of no new local coronavirus transmissions, imported cases rise

BEIJING/SHANGHAI (Reuters) – Mainland China reported a second consecutive day of no new local coronavirus infections as the epicentre of the epidemic Hubei province opened its borders, but imported cases rose as Beijing ramped up controls to prevent a resurgence of infections.

A total of 67 new cases were reported as of end-Wednesday, up from 47 a day earlier, all of which were imported, China’s National Health Commission said in a statement on Thursday.

The total number of cases now stands at 81,285.

The commission reported a total of 3,287 deaths at the end of Wednesday, up six from the previous day.

All of the new patients were travellers who came to China from overseas, with the mainland reporting no locally transmitted infections on Wednesday.

Shanghai reported the most cases with 18 followed by Inner Mongolia region at 12 and Guangdong province at 11.

The number of new daily cases remain down sharply from the height of the outbreak in the country in February, allowing Beijing to push for restarting economic activity in the world’s second biggest economy.

Hubei province, home to some 60 million people, reported no new cases on Wednesday and opened its borders. Public transport restarted and residents in the city of Xianning strolled the streets wearing masks.

The lockdown of Hubei’s capital Wuhan, where the virus first appeared late last year, will be lifted on April 8, a milestone in China’s war against the epidemic as Beijing shifts its focus towards stemming imported cases and rebooting the economy.

Fearing a new wave of infections from imported cases, authorities have ramped up quarantine and screening measures in other major cities including Beijing, where any travellers arriving from overseas must submit to centralised quarantine.

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