‘I hope you catch corona’: Drunken man threatens mother with butter knife, coughs on deputy, officials say

DeLAND, Fla. — A 46-year-old drunken DeLand man was arrested Saturday evening after he grabbed a butter knife, threatened to kill his mother and coughed on a deputy who was called to the home, the Volusia Sheriff’s Office said.

Deputies said a woman called 911 to report that her son, Brent Smith, shoved her several times before grabbing a butter knife and threatening to kill her at their Leon Avenue home.

Investigators said Smith grabbed her cellphone from her hand and was still holding it when deputies arrived at the home.

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Deputies said they handcuffed Smith, and he coughed toward them and threatened to “bash their (expletive) brains in.”

“I hope you catch corona,” Smith could be heard telling a deputy from the back seat of a patrol car. “I hope the coronavirus -- I hope it latches on to you. I hope it makes you puke. I hope you die.”

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He is then heard on body-worn camera video repeatedly coughing.

"If any of my deputies get sick after this, I'm going to hold this scumbag personally responsible," Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood said in a tweet Sunday. "Can't say I'm surprised a grown man with such little respect for his mother would also show this much hatred for law enforcement. Maybe they will teach him to cover his mouth in jail."

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Smith was arrested on charges of aggravated assault, aggravated battery, tampering with a witness, robbery by sudden snatching, grand theft, assault on a law enforcement officer, corruption by threat against a public official and violation of probation on an original charge of aggravated battery on a pregnant person.

He was taken to the Volusia County Branch Jail, where he is being held without bail.

Watch the full video below (warning: some may find the content upsetting):

“Coronavirus

Jason Kelly

Jason Kelly, WFTV.com

Jason Kelly joined WFTV in 2014.