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Nome Woman ‘Crying COVID-19’ and Coughing Arrested for ‘Terroristic Threatening’

Close-up of a white Nome Police Department vehicle.
A Nome Police Department vehicle. Photo: KNOM file, Matthew F. Smith.

A local woman was arrested for claiming she had COVID-19 as she reportedly coughed on patrons at the Nome Recreation Center.

Nome Police arrived at the rec center yesterday in response to 36-year-old Dawn Oozevaseuk allegedly coughing on people, saying she was transmitting the coronavirus to them.

Oozevaseuk was arrested and is being held at Anvil Mountain Correctional Center without bail on charges of terroristic threatening in the second degree. [UPDATE: District Attorney John Earthmann confirmed that Oozevaseuk was released at 3:50pm on Wednesday April 15th on her own recognizance.]

NPD responded to the report yesterday afternoon, hours after the first positive case of COVID-19 was confirmed in the Norton Sound region.

The incident took place at the recreation center which is currently housing much of Nome’s unsheltered population, some of whom suffer from respiratory illnesses and have other underlying health conditions.

In a release from the Nome Police Department, NPD wrote that they are “taking the pandemic very seriously and [have] a zero tolerance to violations of this nature”.

Oozevaseuk has a preliminary hearing scheduled for June 1st.

Image at top: A Nome Police Department vehicle. Photo from KNOM file, Matthew F. Smith.

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