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Coronavirus Kent: video shows thief spitting at police officer and taunting 'I've got corona'

Shocking footage has captured the moment a thief spat at a police officer before singing "I've got corona".

Oliver Cook, 35, was arrested outside Co-op in Oxford Street, Whitstable, at about 6.20pm on Sunday after he was spotted trying to steal meat.

The moment Oliver Cook attacked officers

Supermarket staff called police after he became abusive when challenged over shoplifting and damaging a store display.

But as he was searched by officers, he spat at one and claimed he had Covid-19.

Video footage taken on a police body-worn camera shows Cook spitting at an officer, who replies: "Do not spit at me. You're under arrest for assaulting an emergency worker. Is that clear?"

Then, while being restrained on the ground and wearing a spit hood, Cook laughs while repeatedly taunting officers in a sing-song voice, saying: "I've got corona".

He also kicked another officer, before being taken away in a police van.

Cook, of no fixed abode, was later charged with two counts of assaulting an emergency worker, theft and criminal damage.

He admitted the charges at Medway Magistrates' Court on Tuesday and was jailed for a total of 120 days.

The District Commander for Canterbury and Dover, Chief Inspector Elena Hall, said: "All emergency services and our whole community, which includes our officers and staff, are working extremely hard in challenging circumstances.

"We will not tolerate attacks of this kind. We will seek the prosecution of anyone who spits at or otherwise assaults any of our team, making sure the court know it is aggravated by any claims to have the coronavirus infection."

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