A Canadian man named James Potok who deems himself an ‘artist’ was charged for declaring mid-air on a WestJet flight that he was infected with the pneumonia symptomatic coronavirus.
The Ontario’s Peel Police with mischief and breach of recognizance was the department that charged Potok, because he already faced previous criminal charges. He was eventually released on certain conditions.
Video footage taken on the WestJet flight that was flying from Toronto to Montego Bay, Jamaica was released showing Potok in a surgical mask and informing the other passengers that he had just traveled to Wuhan, China, the ground zero of the outbreak.
The airplane crew decided to turn the flight around and return to Toronto with their 250 passengers on board. The airline then told CBC that their flight attendants acted “out of an abundance of caution,” and added that their flight was diverted because of an “unruly guest.”
According the CityNews, Potok told the other passengers:
“I just came back from Hunan province, the capital of the coronavirus, I’m not feeling too well,” Potok told passengers. “Thank you.”
“ANY PUBLICITY FOR MYSELF IS GOOD PUBLICITY.”
Potok later told Global News:
“I was looking to get a viral video. I figured it would invoke some kind of reaction, like ‘this kid’s got some balls’ or ‘this kid’s crazy,’ whatever it is.”
Wuhan, the epidemic’s epicentre is actually in Hubei province in China, and not in Hunan. Nearly 80,000 coronavirus cases have been reported in mainland China with 80% of it located in Hubei province.
Most airlines have stopped all their flights to China in order to try and contain the virus. Last month, the World Health Organization declared coronavirus to be a global public health emergency.
This ‘self-made star’ has less than 1,000 subscribers on YouTube, a little over 34,000 followers on Instagram and 216 fans on SoundCloud. He isn’t the first person to try and record a viral stunt for some fame.
The other passengers on the flight can be seen in various uploaded videos on Twitter calling Potok out for that horrible stunt that delayed their vacations and other plans, just so he could film a video on the hopes of it being viral. Naturally, Potok doesn’t see it that way.
“I’m an artist. Any publicity for myself is good publicity,” said Potok.
Potok is required to make an appearance at the Ontario Court of Justice in Brampton on March 9th.
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True Activist / Report a typo