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Assault charges laid after man spit on Ottawa police officer, saying he had COVID-19

This came after the suspect allegedly stole a bike and tried to run away from police.
2018-12-12 ottawa police headquartersmv1
Ottawa Police Service headquarters. Mike Vlasveld/ OttawaMatters

A 33-year-old Ottawa man is facing a number of charges after an incident in which police say he spit on officers, telling them he was COVID-19 positive.

Officers responded to a call on Lagan Way, just east of St. Laurent Boulevard and south of Highway 417, at 6:26 a.m. on Friday, as witnesses watched a man break into a garage, steal a bicycle and leave the area.

Thanks to a detailed description of the man, Ottawa police were able to track him down.

Police say the suspect resisted arrest and spat on officers, repeatedly claiming to have COVID-19.

Shane Whelan has been charged with:

  • Breaking and Entering
  • Assault on Police
  • Assault with Intent to Resist
  • Theft Under $5,000
  • Obstructing Police
  • Breach of Probation

He appeared in Show cause court on Thursday.

The Ottawa Police Service is treating threats to the well-being and health of residents and its own members seriously. it says spitting on another person is considered an assault and charges will be considered accordingly.

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