Re-appeal in hunt for teen over ‘coronavirus cough attack’

The woman was left 'distressed and fearful' after the incident took place last Friday.

Police have issued a re-appeal for information in a bid to catch a teenager who coughed on a health worker and told her she would catch coronavirus.

The incident took place last Friday when the woman was driving along the road between Inchmarlo Golf Course and Brathen Wood in Banchory at around 1.40pm.

She stopped her car after seeing a boy waving for her attention but when she pulled over he coughed directly in her face and said she would catch coronavirus.

The boy, who was aged between 13 and 16, then ran off into the woods laughing.

Police are treating the incident as assault and are keen to trace the youngster.

The boy is described as being around 5ft6 with a slim build and speaking in a local accent.

He was wearing a light grey hoodie, a black jacket and black or dark blue joggers and is believed to have joined a group of other youths after running off.

Officers are keen to speak to speak to anyone who may have seen a group of teenagers near to Brathens woods on the road between Banchory and Torphins, known locally as the Glassel Road, around the time of the assault, or before or after the incident.

In particular they would like to speak to a young person who was seen around an hour after the assault on a black BMX type bike wearing a black full face helmet as he may be able to help with enquiries.

Drivers who were on the road at the time have also been urged to check any dash-cam footage they may have and residents in and around the woods are asked to check their residential CCTV before and after the time of the incident.

Sergeant Garry Garrow said: “This was more than just a prank, it left the woman distressed and fearful. Anyone who knows who any of these youths are should get in touch immediately.

“I would like to thank those who have already contacted us with information.

“Banchory is a great community and when something like this occurs, everyone feels it. This behaviour was despicable and in the current climate, absolutely unacceptable.

“There may be members of the community who know the person responsible, and we appeal to them to assist with our ongoing investigation. Anyone with information should call Police Scotland on 101.”

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