A 54-year-old West Palm Beach man, who ought to know better, assaulted a black security guard and called him a racial slur after the security guard asked him to obey Breakers’ mask requirement. Why are so many people becoming so irate that private companies are requiring masks on their property? Well, the mask is a reminder that the pandemic is real, not a fiction orchestrated by a cabal of lizard people who feed on the adrenochrome of infants. Any apparent sign that reality is contradicting that delusion is met with potentially violent rage because it threatens the delusion and hence the identity of the deluded.
That appears to be what happened here. A customer was asked to wear a mask while on-premises of privately-owned property. The customer began throwing obscenities, including racial slurs, at the folks asking him to put on the mask. As the security officer approached the customer, the customer asked him, “Who do you think you are. You’re just a <racial slur> officer!” The security officer then asked the man to leave the store, but the man responded by attempting to tackle the officer. He also appears to have slapped the security guard in the back before himself falling on the floor. The guard, to his credit, did not react. The customer attempted to flee the store before the police arrived. He also damaged property.
Tallying up the charges
What will happen to this 54-year-old man for his public temper tantrum? The man will face charges of robbery and criminal mischief, both felonies. He will also face related charges for simple assault and disorderly conduct. He could be facing charges of battery on the security guard, but police have neglected to charge him as of yet. A prosecutor reviewing the case may see fit to add on the additional charge.
In this case, criminal mischief and robbery are the two most serious charges. Both of them involve the property damage and business interruption that the defendant caused during his outburst. While it’s unclear that the defendant damaged more than $1,000 in the property as would be usual for a felony criminal mischief case, the defendant caused the situation at the business to become unstable resulting in business interruption. Breakers says that the radio the man damaged will cost more than $2,000 to repair. Even if it doesn’t, however, the resulting business interruption could kick the criminal mischief charge up to a third-degree felony. Robbery, in this case, is also a third-degree felony. Both have maximum sentences of five years in state prison.
Just so we’re clear on the law, Florida may not require any business to enforce mask orders, but a business has the right to enforce whatever personal conduct and dress policies they please. This includes forcing patrons to wear jackets in fancy restaurants or hotel businesses requiring masks to be worn on-premises.
Talk to a West Palm Beach Criminal Defense Attorney
If you’re facing criminal charges, call our West Palm Beach criminal defense attorneys for help. The Skier Law Firm, P.A. can help resolve the matter with the minimum amount of damage to your future. Call today to learn more.