Teen put under quarantine who coughed on officers could face up to 10 years, police say

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ROCK HILL, S.C. (WJZY) — A teen who was put under a 14-day quarantine could be facing 10 years behind bars after authorities said she coughed on Rock Hill police officers, then laughed about it on video.

Police said what you see in the video is not a laughing matter. FOX 46 got the footage of the teenager’s encounter with police where she coughs on them and laughs.

The suspects face is blurred because of her age.

“We have a 17-year-old juvenile female who went on Facebook live and went and coughed on the officers and laughed about it,” said Lt. Michael Chavis with the Rock Hill Police Department. 

Some may call it a cruel joke, but once the video made the rounds on social media, it quickly became serious business. That’s because they say the girl was instructed to self-quarantine for 14-days by a medical professional, and officers didn’t know it at the time.

“A little while later, we get calls saying ‘this is what’s going on. This is what happened and there’s pictures from the juvenile’s social media account saying she was put under a 14-day quarantine,” Lt. Chavis said. 

This means she shouldn’t have been out at all. Police say she was at a park Monday night when they went to break up a fight, and because of it, the officers involved have to self-quarantine, and it could affect their families, too.

“You’re creating more panic than we need right now.  You’re creating stress and undue harm to the general public for them to have to fear for their safety,” Lt. Chavis said. 

As for the suspect, she’s under house arrest and could be facing some serious time.

“It’s a general sessions misdemeanor and it’s up to 10 years in prison for that charge,” Lt. Chavis said. 

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