Police say accused shoplifter faces felony for spitting on officers

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UNIVERSITY HEIGHTS, Ohio — A 41-year-old man is facing several charges after police say he shoplifted and then spit on officers.

Kenneth Gulley was arrested Saturday by University Heights police on a misdemeanor theft charge and a felony count of harassment by an inmate, for allegedly spitting on officers.

If convicted he could face several months in prison, but a prosecutor believes that is not enough. “It’s one of the most disgusting things a human being can do to another human being and the officers don’t want to deal with that and they shouldn’t have to deal with it,” said Mike Astrab, a University Heights prosecutor.

“Frankly, I think the penalty is too low. I think if you spit at a police officer it should be significantly higher than a felony of the fifth degree.”

University Heights police body camera video obtained by the FOX 8 I-Team shows Gulley arguing with officers and then spitting on the ground several times.

Once Gulley was placed in the cruiser police say his behavior got worse and he spit at the officers through an open window.

His charges are pending in Shaker Heights Municipal Court.

Gulley is due back in court in the next few weeks.

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