A man is in VicPD custody facing charges of assault after a dispute over wearing a mask at Market on Yates escalated to threats and violence.
Officers were called to the grocery store just after 10:30 a.m. Friday morning for a report that a man had entered the store not wearing a mask.
Callers said that the man had been offered a mask, and confronted staff both verbally and physically.
Part of the incident was caught on camera and posted to Reddit under the r/Victoria thread. In the video a man is seen yelling that store staff are “psychopaths” and threatening to assault police if they are called.
When VicPD officers arrived, the man approached them in a threatening manner. He was arrested without further incident and transported to cells.
The man was fined $230 under the COVID-19 Related Measures Act (CRMA) for abusive or belligerent behaviour. Police are also recommending charges including uttering threats and assault with a weapon.
Under the CRMA and provincial health orders, masks are required to be worn in public spaces, including grocery stores.
Police are still investigating and are asking witnesses, including anyone who captured video, to come forward. Those with information are asked to call VicPD at 250-995-7654 extension 1.