Nurse in Ireland Says Group of Teens Coughed on Her and Blocked Her Path While She Was Walking

A nurse in Ireland says a group of teens blocked her path and coughed on her while she was walking during a break in her shift.

Susan Nutley, a nurse at a children's hospital in Dublin, went out for a jog on Monday night when she was approached by a group of about 15 to 20 boys. The group blocked Nutley's jogging path, coughing on her and laughing when she asked them to move.

"I did three night shifts, and I thought I would get out from some fresh air," Nutley told the Irish Independent. "There was one on either side of me in front, all laughing and jeering."

She also told a local Facebook group, LoveClontarf, about the incident to highlight the danger that the teens could be causing to the public. "They refused to move out of people's way (including an elderly man). As the lady approached she asked them to move. They continued to block the path and ignored her," the Facebook post reads. "Quite unbelievably, approx. 5 of the boys then followed her, coughing towards her dramatically, thinking it is a funny joke."

Referring to the coronavirus pandemic, she added: "They could possibly kill someone. They don't know how dangerous this is."

She told the Independent, "I could see a man in his 90s walking with a frame [walker] and an elderly woman with him in a wheelchair."

Coronavirus in Ireland
Pedestrians walk past graffiti urging people to wash their hands in the Grafton Street area of the Dublin City Center on March 13. Paul Faith/Getty

According to a Johns Hopkins University tracker, Ireland has over 1,328 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus, which causes the respiratory disease COVID-19, and at least seven deaths.

According to The Irish Post, Aodhán O'Riordán, an Irish politician in Dublin Bay North, responded to the incident by saying, "This isn't the time for any anti-social behavior—it's time for the opposite. It's time for people to correct their behavior and follow HSE [Health Service Executive] advice and get through this together. Because if we don't, we will be looking at empty chairs around the dinner table this Christmas and nobody wants that."

A spokesperson for Garda, Ireland's police force, told the website that it had not been informed of the specific incident involving Nutley but noted there would be serious consequences for any person found coughing on anyone.

"Any member of the public should report such activity to [Garda]," the spokesperson told "This activity could amount to an offence under the Public Order Act or Non-Fatal Offences Against the Person Act."

This is not the only report of someone being coughed on during pandemic. The Gardi spokesperson told it was investigating a similar report of a man allegedly coughing toward an elderly couple as they were out walking.