Headlines

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  • hospitalimage

    Two health workers among new COVID-19 cases

    An urgent investigation into how two medical ward staff at Burnie's North West Regional Hospital contracted coronavirus is underway. The other four cases in the state confirmed late yesterday all returned from overseas, interstate or the now-infamous Ruby…
  • virus testing

    North-west coronavirus testing expanded

    Coronavirus testing is being ramped up in Tasmania's north-west, in the hope of finding a source of infection for two people in Devonport with no obivious links to cruise ships or overseas travel. There are currently 74 confirmed cases in the state, including…
  • Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk is seen during a press conference at Queensland Parliament House in Brisbane, Tuesday, March 31, 2020. Premier Palaszczuk announced that Queensland had 55 more cases of coronavirus (COVID-19), taking the state

    Queensland months away from infection peak -sharenews

    Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk (pictured) has warned Queensland is still some way off approaching its infection peak (AAP Image/Darren England) Queensland's coronavirus tally has climbed again and the state is months away from a peak in infections, the premier…
  • Key

    Prison threat for bully landlords

    There's been a slapdown from the nation's financial watchdog for hard-nosed landlords and real estate agents. The Australian Securities and Investments Commission is threatening prison or fines of up to $1.26 million for landlords and property managers who've…
  • Prime Minister Scott Morrison announces the government

    Politician pay cut not helpful: Morrison -sharenews

    According to Prime Minister Scott Morrison (pictured) politician pay cuts would not be helpful (AAP Image/Mick Tsikas) The Morrison government has rejected calls for politicians and public servants to take a pay cut as the country deals with the economic…
  • People wearing protective masks seen at the wet market. Financial Secretary Paul Chan has announced today at that the government spending forecast to exceed revenue by HK$139 billion in 2020-21, deficit predicted for six years in a row Hong Kong, China, February 26, 2020. Photo by May James/ABACAPRESS.COM.

    Morrison backs Chinese animal market ban -sharenews

    People wearing protective masks seen at the wet market. Prime Minister Scott Morrison has called for a global crackdown on Chinese wild animal markets which are believed to be the source of the coronavirus pandemic (May James/ABACAPRESS.COM) Prime Minister…
  • A supplied image shows Macquarie University MindSpot clinic Executive Director, Professor Nick Titov posing for a photograph. (AAP Image/Supplied by Macquarie University) NO ARCHIVING, EDITORIAL USE ONLY

    Resilience can defeat virus, experts say -sharenews

    Macquarie University MindSpot clinic Executive Director, Professor Nick Titov (AAP Image/Supplied by Macquarie University) Many of us have already lost or fear losing our jobs, others have fallen sick and some have even died. Everyone has been dislocated from…
  • Global_coronavirus_cases_top_one_million.jpg

    Global coronavirus cases top one million -sharenews

    Global coronavirus cases have topped one million as the pandemic explodes in the US and the death toll continues to climb in Italy and Spain, according to a tally by Johns Hopkins University. The virus has killed more than 51,000 globally with the largest…
  • Another coronavirus arrest

    Another coronavirus related arrest has been made in Launceston, this time a 23 year old woman for allegedly not having a reasonable excuse to be away from her home. It started when police called out to a vehicle break-in near the Launceston General Hospital…
  • Two_NT_returned_travellers_get_COVID-19.jpg

    Two NT returned travellers get COVID-19 -sharenews

    Two Northern Territory women have been diagnosed with COVID-19 bringing the total cases in the Territory to 21. All cases have been acquired interstate or overseas with no community transmissions or deaths. A Darwin woman in her 20s tested positive for the…
  • Prime Minister Scott Morrison announces the government

    Government steps up with free child care -sharenews

    Prime Minister Scott Morrison (pictured) has announced free childcare for parents still using it during the coronavirus crisis (AAP Image/Mick Tsikas) Childcare will be free for parents still using it during the coronavirus crisis. The government will also…
  • NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller speaks to the media during a press conference outside the RFS Headquarters in Sydney, Thursday, April 2, 2020. (AAP Image/Joel Carrett) NO ARCHIVING

    NSW isolation rules to last 90 days -sharenews

    NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller (pictured) says police are trying to make reasonable decisions when enforcing the new rules and he's urged NSW residents to use common sense too (AAP Image/Joel Carrett) NSW Police will not seek an extension to coronavirus…
  • Generic image inside a lab at the CSIRO

    Ferrets will reveal if virus vaccines work -sharenews

    Australian scientists from the CSIRO have been trusted to determine if the two vaccine candidates are effective and safe enough to test on humans (AAP Image/David Crosling) Ferrets at a high-security Victorian lab will determine if two potential coronavirus…
  • Virus_sparks_job_hunt_death_toll_now_23.jpg

    Virus sparks job hunt, death toll now 23 -sharenews

    Australia's coronavirus death toll has risen to 23, with deaths in the country's three biggest states adding to the tally of victims. NSW, Victoria and Queensland reported one new death each on Thursday morning as the number of diagnosed cases approaches 5000…
  • Third_coronavirus_death_recorded_in_Qld.jpg

    Third coronavirus death recorded in Qld -sharenews

    A man has died in hospital after contracting coronavirus in Queensland, bringing the state's death toll to three. The 85-year-old Darling Downs man died overnight in Toowoomba, west of Brisbane, taking the national death toll to 23. A total of four…
  • The Ship - Ruby Princess

    Ships of shame

    The Home Affairs Minster is accusing cruise liners of lying about the health of passengers, so they can dock in Australia. Hundreds of people who were exposed to coronavirus were allowed to disembark the "Ruby Princess" in Sydney almost two weeks ago. The…
  • PortArthurPenitentiary

    Corona-tour chased up

    Tasmanian health authorities are working with a bus tour operator following news an infected pair of tourists travelled around the state for a week and a half last month. One of the pair, who've been diagnosed after going home interstate, didn't know they…
  • Doctors

    Virus count stalls

    The state's director of public health says while a pause in the number of coronavirus infections is welcome, it's not the end of the battle. Tasmania's infection count has held steady in the last 24 hours, despite testing being doubled over the past three…
  • Coronavirus latest news2

    Latest snapshot of the coronavirus impact 1/4/20 -sharenews

    The latest snapshot of COVID-19 cases, measures and impacts as of 0730 AEDT on April 1. NUMBERS * Confirmed cases in Australia: 4557. NSW remains the worst hit with 2032. * Australian deaths: 19 (eight in NSW, four in Vic, two in WA, two in Qld, two in Tas,…
  • Abalone

    Seafood breakthrough

    There's relief from Tasmania's Abalone Council at Morrison Government moves to jump-start overseas freight. With China's coronavirus situation apparently improving, demand is starting to ramp up for our rock lobster and abalone again. "It's an opportunity to…

NSW man coughs on officers in virus prank

Australian police station sign in Sydney New South Wales Australia

NSW man coughs on officers in virus prank (Bigstock)

A 21-year-old Coffs Harbour man is facing jail for a filmed coronavirus prank during which he allegedly coughed on a NSW officer and told her he had the highly infectious disease.

The arrest on Tuesday came as an alleged drink-driver was also accused of coughing in the direction of an officer in Muswellbrook while saying he was infected with COVID-19.

The 21-year-old will appear in court in May after being charged over the north coast incident which caused the Coffs Harbour Police Station to be temporarily closed.

The police union slammed the prank as "grossly irresponsible and dangerous" after the man was accused of coughing on a 71-year-old general station officer.

Video uploaded to the internet shows the man approaching the station and saying: "I'm a criminal, I've got to report to these dogs every day."

When he arrives at the counter he says: "I've been tested positive for that coronavirus ... I have to report every day or I'll go to jail."

He's asked by a police officer " Do you honestly think that that's funny?" before replying: "It's a little bit of a laugh."

A female friend filmed part of the incident and can be heard remonstrating with police as the 21-year-old was led away.

"The police station was closed, and the necessary isolation protocols were put in place," NSW Police said in a statement.

"Upon further inquiries, it was revealed the man did not have the virus."

He was charged with stalking or intimidation with intent to cause fear of physical harm - which carries a maximum jail term of five years - and resisting arrest.

He was granted bail and is due to appear in court on May 6.

Meanwhile, a 42-year-old man has been accused of coughing on police after being pulled over and asked to provide a breath test in Muswellbrook, in the upper Hunter region.

He was charged with high-range drink-driving after allegedly recording a blood alcohol level of 0.274 - more than five times the legal limit.

He was pulled over after police noticed his Holden Commodore stopped in the middle of the road on Tuesday afternoon.

Police say that when he was asked to submit to a breath test he claimed he had COVID-19 and coughed at the police officer.

He was granted bail to appear in Muswellbrook Local Court on April 6.

Police Association of NSW president Tony King says officers are appalled by the behaviour of some members of the public during the COVID-19 pandemic - including at supermarkets.

"Given the exposure to risks that are faced every day by the NSW Police Force the grossly irresponsible and dangerous behaviour of the two individuals today, who allegedly coughed towards an employee at Coffs Harbour and an officer at Muswellbrook, is beyond deplorable," Mr King said in a statement.

"Police officers are working above and beyond the call of duty to give reassurance to the public in a time of public crisis - they should never be targets of abuse."

© AAP 2020

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