Michigan man allegedly spits in police officer’s face, says he may have coronavirus (COVID-19)

Owosso man facing charges

Ian Ross Thurmes
Ian Ross Thurmes (Genesee County Sheriff’s Office)

MT. MORRIS TOWNSHIP, Mich. – A man is facing charges after police say he spit in an officer’s face and said he may or may not have coronavirus (COVID-19).

Mt. Morris Township responded to a home on West Mt. Morris Road on reports of a possible domestic disturbance and fight in the yard.

When officers arrived, two people were restraining Ian Ross Thurmes, 26, of Owosso.

Police said the people holding Thurmes let him go as officers approached. Officers described him as appearing highly intoxicated and said he was yelling, screaming and kicking.

Officers handcuffed Thurmes. Police said while he was on the ground, he rolled over and spit in an officer’s face. The officer was wearing a mask.

After he spit on her, Thurmes is accused of asking if she thought he had coronavirus before saying maybe he did or maybe he didn’t have it.

Thurmes is charged with harmful substance-person falsely exposed, a 5-year felony, and resisting and obstructing police.

“This is no laughing matter and I don’t find any humor in it all,” said Prosecutor David Leyton. “People are dying from this virus, the entire world has been turned upside down because of it, and our first responders do not need the added stress of being worried whether they are going to contract this virus while they are performing their duties."