A 66-year-old woman from San Jose will be tried next week for deliberately coughing in the face of a baby at the height of the coronavirus pandemic, prosecutors said Friday.
Nancy Nordland, who was working as an elementary school teacher in a yogurt country in San Jose at the time of the June 12 incident, left the area shortly after and was only heard three weeks ago.
Nordland is due to be tried in the Santa Clara District Supreme Court in San Jose on Tuesday, according to the Santa Clara District Prosecutor’s Office. She was charged with wrongdoing last summer after the public identified her from a surveillance video released by the authorities.
On June 12, Nordland got into an argument with a woman while waiting in line at a yogurt country in San Jose. Prosecutors said Nordland didn’t like how close the woman was to her. After this disagreement, Nordland took off her mask, leaned over the 1-year-old child’s stroller and coughed the child three times directly in the face, prosecutors said.
Employees and customers in Yogurtland confronted them and Nordland left the store without paying for their food, authorities said.
Police unsuccessfully searched for the suspect, who was later identified as a teacher at Alex Anderson Elementary School in San Jose.
Shortly after the incident, the Oak Grove Union School District announced that she was no longer working at the school.
“We all need to exercise empathy and patience as we work together on this pandemic,” said DA Jeff Rosen in a statement on Friday. “It is unacceptable – and criminal, to take someone’s frustration with someone’s child.”
Nordland faces up to six months in prison and a $ 1,000 fine. She was not available for comment Friday.