A woman visited a Pennsylvania supermarket in the early days of the epidemic, told shoppers she had tested positive for COVID-19, and then began coughing on the food. She’ll be going to jail in a year and a half.
Margaret Ann Cirko of Eastern Pennsylvania was sentenced to one to two years in jail, eight years of probation, and a $15,000 fine for her acts on March 25, 2020, according to The Morning Call. Cirko visited a branch of Gerrity’s Supermarket on that day, with instances spreading across the country, and began shrieking, “I have the virus.” Everybody is going to get sick now.” Then she started coughing and spitting on the food and other items.
The store’s co-owner, Joe Fasula, said they had to toss out $35,000 worth of food. Health officials weren’t sure if the infection could spread on surfaces at the time.
Cirko was convicted of a second-degree criminal charge of weapons of mass destruction. In exchange for her guilty plea to the felony charge, the other charges against her were withdrawn, including criminal mischief, disorderly conduct, and making terroristic threats.
“I’m sorry for what I did that day,” Cirko told the court. “I wish I could take it back.”
Cirko later tested negative for COVID.
Cirko’s attorney said she had a history of alcohol and mental health issues, and that she was intoxicated at the time.