Man arrested after spitting on sidewalk in Daytona Beach

Police arrested 6 others last year on same charge

Austin Kennedy.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - An 18-year-old Daytona Beach man was arrested after he violated a city ordinance by spitting on a sidewalk, which police said created an unsanitary environment for others in the area.

According to Daytona Beach police, Austin Kennedy was walking in the 700 block of North Grandview Avenue when an officer saw him "pressing his lips together and creating saliva." Kennedy then "with force discharged the saliva from his mouth," according to police.

"It is a rarity, but it depends on the officer's discretion," DBPD Police Chief Michael Chitwood said. "We don't drive down the street looking for people spitting."

Chitwood said officers were in the process of arresting someone when Kennedy started "mouthing off" at them and then from five yards away, spit toward the officers. He said the officers could have arrested Kennedy for disorderly conduct or interfering with police business, but instead, the chief said, they gave him a break.

Kennedy was arrested and taken to jail, and issued a $100 citation.

"He was a knucklehead and he got what he deserved," Chitwood said.

Chitwood said he supports the decision of his officer to arrest Kennedy.

"I'm not questioning (the officer). He did what he had to do. The ordinance is on the books for a reason," he said.

Daytona Beach police arrested six people in 2011 for violating the ordinance, according to a spokesman.

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