Massachusetts police on Tuesday arrested a man accused of spitting at two women hikers who weren’t wearing face masks — and telling them he had COVID-19.
Hale Powell, 71, was charged with false threat of a biological agent and assault and battery for Saturday’s caught-on-camera incident on a hiking trail in Ashburnham.
The septuagenarian pleaded not guilty at his arraignment later Tuesday — where a judge ordered him to quarantine and get tested for the coronavirus, the Telegram & Gazette newspaper reported.
One of the two women hiking on the trail captured video of the encounter, showing an elderly man spitting at her and then saying “I have COVID. I’ve been tested positive.”