Man accused of exposing Gulfport police officer to HIV
Officials said a man who is HIV positive spat in a police officer’s face during his arrest, resulting in a felony charge that alleges he knowingly exposed the officer to a contagious disease. The officer must undergo testing to see if he develops symptoms, police Sgt. Damon McDaniel said.
Police arrested BX, 51, Tuesday night on the felony charge and misdemeanor charges of trespassing, malicious mischief and intimidating a police officer. Police confronted X because he was accused of trespassing on property on Nancy Lane, McDaniel said. X became belligerent as the officer was putting him in the back of the patrol car and spat in the officer’s face, he said. X was held at the Harrison County jail.
Justice Court Judge Brandon Ladner set bond on the felony at $75,000. The misdemeanor bonds, set by municipal court, total $2,192.75. X also has a contempt charge with a $250 cash bond.
Saliva does not transmit the virus unless the saliva contains blood that comes in contact with another person’s mucous membranes, such as the mouth, or with an open wound or broken skin, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Under state law, knowingly exposing another person to a contagious disease such as HIV, hepatitis B or hepatitis C is punishable by maximum penalties of 10 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.