Police in Texas are asking people to help them track down a young woman who claims to have COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, and is “willingly spreading” it. Police will charge her with “terroristic threat.”
On Sunday, Carrollton Police Department identified Lorraine Maradiaga, 18, as the person who posted a series of worrisome and bizarre videos on Snapchat over the weekend.
In one of these videos, Maradiaga is seen filming herself at what she says is a Walmart and issues a strange threat to the camera, KXAS, a local news station in Dallas-Fort Worth, reported.
“I’m here at Walmart about to infest every (expletive), because if I’m going down, all you (expletive) are going down,” she said, per the station.
In another video seen by KXAS, the woman appears to be sitting in a car at a coronavirus drive-through testing site. A nurse can be heard telling the person driving the car to go home and wait for the test results.
Maradiaga also filmed herself later that day repeatedly coughing into the camera and saying, per KXAS: “If you want to get the coronavirus and (expletive) die, call me.”
The Carrollton Texas Police Department noted on Twitter that they are unsure if Maradiaga has COVID-19, and “have no confirmation Maradiaga is actually a threat to public health.” But they are taking the teen’s actions on social media “very seriously.”
A representative from the Carrollton Police Department told HuffPost that officers went to Maradiaga’s house on Sunday, but she was not home. As of Monday they are still searching for her.
The rep said that the department’s criminal investigations and intelligence division are currently on the case. They added that they’re now also working “in conjunction with the Dallas Field Office of the FBI.”
Maradiaga isn’t the only person threatening public health on social media amid the coronavirus pandemic. In March, a man in Missouri was charged with a terrorist threat after he filmed himself in a Walmart saying, “Who’s afraid of coronavirus? Don’t touch your mouth,” before licking a row of deodorant sticks on the store’s shelf.
On Sunday, a Twitter user responded to the Carrollton Texas Police Department’s post about the woman’s whereabouts with a video that is presumably from Maradiaga’s Snapchat account.
In it, Maradiaga appears to be in a car while talking to the camera.
“Like 60 people screen-recorded my whole Snapchat, I don’t give a fuck,” she says, presumably about the content of her earlier posts. “Make me famous, bitch.”