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Woman who intentionally coughed on cancer patient in Jacksonville Pier 1 starts 30-day jail sentence

Debra Hunter was arrested and charged with misdemeanor assault in June of 2020 after the victim recorded Hunter deliberately coughing on her.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The woman who went viral after coughing on a fellow customer at a Jacksonville Pier 1 has been booked into jail to begin serving her sentence of 30 days.

Debra Hunter was arrested and charged with misdemeanor assault in June of 2020 after a victim recorded Hunter deliberately coughing on her after a squabble with employees inside the Town Center store.

Hunter was booked into jail on Tuesday around 3 p.m., according to jail records. However, her current housing location was not listed.

Earlier this month, the judge also ordered Debra Hunter to six months probation and said she must participate in a mental health evaluation along with anger management.

She was also given a $500 fine, and must pay restitution to cover the costs the victim incurred for a COVID-19 test. 

RELATED: 'Oh my!' | Duval judge watches video for first time of Debra Hunter coughing on Pier 1 customer before handing down jail sentence

The sentence decision follows more than seven months of court hearings and three plea deal attempts, which were all struck down. Last month, the sentencing process began with Hunter's neighbor testifying about her good character and the remorse she feels about that day.

"I'm asking you Judge [James] Ruth that in the moment you go about serving justice to Debra, please try to empathize with how difficult it must be for her to attempt to move forward each new day through the relentless court of public opinion that will neither forgive or forget," the neighbor said.

First Coast News also obtained documents that comprised of letters from witnesses and Hunter, including one she wrote to the victim, along with two-dozen pages of threats and profane insults, among the thousands the Nassau County woman said she received as the video of her assault went viral.