Police are searching for a woman who appeared to intentionally cough on a 1-year-old boy in a store after accusing the child’s mother of failing to socially distance herself.
The incident took place in a Yogurtland store in San Jose, California, on June 12. The assault suspect, described as a white female in her 60s, had been standing in line in front of the mother and her son, who was in a stroller.
“The preliminary investigation revealed the suspect was upset the female was not maintaining proper social distancing, so the suspect removed her face mask, got close to the baby’s face, and coughed 2-3 times,” a press release from the San Jose Police Department stated. The woman left the store and hasn’t been identified, police said.
The child’s mother, Mireya Mora, is Latina and told San Francisco station KGO-TV that she believed the incident was motivated by race.
“She said, ‘So you don’t understand, and do you even understand what I’m saying, like I’m not even speaking English,’” Mora told NBC Bay Area.
Mora said her son had a slight fever after the incident but is doing OK, according to KGO-TV.
“If he were to get sick … I can’t even imagine,” she said.
The San Jose Police Department has released surveillance footage of the incident, which can be viewed below. Anyone with information is asked to contact Det. Dan Bowman of the San Jose Police Department’s Assaults Unit.
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