State Watch — Verizon

Grocery store worker slapped after asking customer to wear mask, video shows

Colorado police are seeking the public’s help in identifying a woman seen in security footage earlier this month slapping a grocery store worker in the face after the employee asked the shopper to wear a face mask.

According to Denver’s Fox-affiliated station, KDVR, the incident, which occurred on Feb. 3, happened after a worker told a customer at a King Soopers grocery store to put on a mask, after which the customer called the employee a vulgar name and slapped her. 

The employee told police that the suspect is “a regular at the store,” and had repeatedly been asked by employees to wear a mask to adhere to coronavirus safety guidelines. 

KDVR reported that the suspect allegedly claimed a medical exemption for why she was not wearing a mask, after which the employee attempted to offer the customer other options to purchase her groceries. 

After the suspect slapped the employee, the shopper reportedly ran away and has not since returned to the store. 

While the employee told police the slap did not hurt, she is pushing for harassment charges to be brought against the shopper. 

The Parker Police Department on Wednesday shared security footage of the incident on Facebook and Twitter, along with contact information for people to use should they have any information regarding the incident or the suspect. 

While stores across the country have implemented mask mandates to adhere to local and state safety guidelines intended to curb the spread of COVID-19, some customers have been resistant to such measures. 

Over the summer, another Colorado woman called liquor store employees “Nazis” after she was asked to leave for refusing to comply with its mask policy. 

Viral video from the incident showed Ruby Musso arguing with staff, writing in a caption online, “I was harassed and assaulted, then thrown out of Molly’s Spirits in Lakeside, Colorado for not wearing a mask,” claiming that the store was violating the law for demanding that she wear a face mask. 

Her claims to being legally allowed to refuse a mask were in contradiction with Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D), who at the time of the video’s release said that businesses were allowed to refuse service to those without face coverings. 

Polis later on that day issued a statewide order directing everyone in the state age 10 and above to wear masks in public, a move that was extended earlier this month until at least the beginning of March.

Tags Colorado coronavirus pandemic coronavirus restrictions Denver Facebook Fox Grocery store Jared Polis mask mandate Twitter
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