Cody Pfister, a 26-year-old Missouri man, was arrested and charged with making a terrorist threat after posting a video to social media in which he licked a row of toiletries at a store after saying, “Who’s afraid of the coronavirus?”
Pfister’s video went viral, and he was soon outed.
The City of Warrenton, Missouri police department announced: “A local resident who took a video of themselves licking the merchandise after making a “Corona Virus” statement at Walmart and posting it to social media has been taken into custody. Charges will be pending through the Warren County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office. This particular video, which won’t be shared here, has gained some international attention and we have received numerous reports about the video from locals, nearby residents, as well as people from the Netherlands, Ireland, and the United Kingdom. We take these complaints very seriously and would like to thank all of those who reported the video so the issue could be addressed.”
The Riverfront Times reports: “The video appears to have been filmed on March 11 at the Warrenton store, according to court records. Pfister was taken into custody this week, and Warren County prosecutors charged him today. The charge is a low-level felony. Bizarrely, he’s not the first person to get in trouble with police for licking surfaces as public health officials beg people to wash their hands, keep at least six feet apart and avoid touching their faces in hopes of slowing the spread of COVID-19. The manager of a grocery store in Wisconsin called police after a woman licked the door handle to a freezer, reportedly to protest the virus, while a manager was disinfecting the store, Newsweek reported.”
Pfister has previous convictions for burglary, theft of a firearm, drug possession and driving while intoxicated, according to the paper.