Spitting in a Police Officers food or drink could become a felony
Your decision to tamper with a police officers food or drink could earn you a ticket to prison if a bill being introduced by Ocean County Assemblyman Ron Dancer becomes law.
The legislation would put in place a no tolerance policy to the "vile act of spitting into a police officer’s food or drink."
Assemblyman Dancer's bill comes after an incident in Park Ridge in July of this year when police received an anonymous tip that an employee at a Starbucks, Kevin Trejo, was spitting into the coffee of police officers who went there to just pick up some caffeine.
The 21-year old from Westwood was later arrested and charged with subjecting a law enforcement officer to bodily fluid, purposely tampering with a law enforcement officer's drink and creating a hazardous environment, according to NorthJersey.com.
Starbucks then offered an apology following the incident.
"We will continue to support Park Ridge Police in their investigation and have a deep respect for the Park Ridge Police Department and the officers who help keep our partners and communities safe," A Starbucks spokesperson told NorthJersey.com.
However, Assemblyman Dancer feels that more needs to be done to prevent these incidents from occurring again, anywhere.
“An apology is nice, but this should never happen in the first place,” Dancer said in a statement Friday morning. “Like everyone else, police officers have the right to expect fair and equal treatment and to be served safe food and drinks. Spitting in their drink is a disgusting and disrespectful act that could lead to an officer falling ill.”
Dancer explains that his bill (A4765) would clarify that spitting on the food or into the drink of a law enforcement officer constitutes third-degree aggravated assault which would carry a sentence of three to five years with a mandatory fine of $15,000.
The bill would also require employers to suspend the employee if he is charged, and fire him if convicted.
“If you commit a despicable act against an officer, like spitting in their drink, you should be arrested and, if convicted, be fired,” Dancer said. “You are not fighting for social justice when you do something like this. You are just being cruel. There is nothing heroic about spitting into an officer’s drink.”
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