4 Palm Springs police officers exposed to coronavirus after infected man spits on them

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A Palm Springs police officer is seen in a 2016 file photo.(Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times)

A Palm Springs police officer is seen in a 2016 file photo.(Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times)

Four Palm Springs police officers were exposed to coronavirus and are in quarantine after being repeatedly spit on by a man who then tested positive for the coronavirus, authorities said Monday. 

The incident unfolded Saturday night following calls about a man throwing things at vehicles, apparently breaking a passing truck’s window, and running in and out of traffic in the area of Indian Canyon and Barista Road, according to a Palm Springs Police Department news release. 

Two sergeants and two officers, all clad in personal protective gear including face masks and gloves,  responded to the scene where they encountered the combative individual, the release stated. 

He “was yelling and spitting on the two sergeants and two officers during the entire event,” police said in the release. “The man was ultimately subdued then placed in the back of a police car where he continued to yell and spit all over the back of the car.”

The spitting and yelling continued even after they arrived at the hospital, authorities added.

Later, the man was tested for coronavirus and received a positive test result, the releasee read. 

The two sergeants and two officers were notified and placed in quarantine for 10 due to the possible exposure. 

“Following the incident, they had to wash themselves from the subject’s saliva that had gotten on various parts of their bodies and uniforms,” police noted. 

The man, who has not been identified, was kept at the hospital for a mental health evaluation. It’s unclear whether he was arrested or would face charges.

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