A Covid faker who coughed in a police officer’s face and lied that he had the virus was jailed for 10 months.
Ryan McLay, 26, became “extremely confrontational” after police broke up a party around a homemade firepit at the height of the coronavirus lockdown.
Officers had to be called twice by neighbours concerned about the noise from the gathering in a communal garden at the rear of a block of flats in Leslie, Fife, surrounded by other houses and flats.
They found a group of males sitting drinking around the firepit, and loud music coming from a sound system connected to an extension lead running down the communal stair from a flat occupied by McLay in the High Street block.
Falkirk Sheriff Court was told on the initial visit, at about 10.15pm, police reminded the group about the health guidelines, asked them to disperse and turn the music off.
At about 11.35pm, police received further complaints about loud music and were informed by callers the volume had been turned up again soon after officers had left.
Officers returned to the scene and unplugged the sound system from the extension cable.
Prosecutor Samantha Brown said: “He was hostile towards the officers and shouted ‘turn my music back on’.
PC Stefanie Ellis put her hand on his arm and placed him under arrest, cautioned him about his conduct.
He was handcuffed and as he was being placed in a police vehicle, PC Ellis asked him if he had any Covid 19-related symptoms.
Ms Brown said: “The accused replied by shouting ‘yes’ and deliberating coughing in an exaggerated manner towards PC Ellis, who was standing about a metre in front of him.”
He was then taken to St Leonards Police Station, Edinburgh, which is an identified facility for people in custody who have or claimed to have Covid 19.
Ms Brown said: “While in custody, he displayed no further symptoms.”
McLay, of High Street, Leslie, pled guilty to police assault, resisting police, and threatening and abusive behaviour on April 15.