Man arrested after allegedly coughing in faces of Chicago officers, claiming he had COVID-19


Photo: Wilmette Police Department

CHICAGO (WGN) – A 21-year-old Wilmette man was arrested Sunday after police said he coughed in the faces of CPD officers while claiming he had COVID-19.

Just before 8 a.m., police were dispatched to the 7400 block of North Wolcott Avenue on the report of a disturbance at a traffic accident.

Police said Anthony Ponzi, 21, was slurring his speech, yelling and was foaming at the mouth at the scene. As officers attempted to speak with Ponzi, police said he coughed and spit in the officers’ faces while claiming he had COVID-19.

Ponzi was placed into custody and was transported to St. Francis, where he reportedly told hospital staff he did not have the virus.

Police spoke with the victim of the accident, a 29-year-old man, who told police Ponzi was traveling the wrong way on Wolcott and crashed into him. He told police Ponzi got out of the vehicle and began pushing and kicking the man.

Ponzi was charged with two counts of aggravated battery against a police officer, two counts of resisting arrest, battery, driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs and driving with an expired license.

It’s unknown at this time if the officers were tested for COVID-19.


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