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Confrontation over wearing a mask at Coronado coffee shop

Posted at 6:43 PM, Jul 19, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-19 22:19:15-04

CORONADO, Calif. (KGTV) -- A video of a man yelling at a teenage employee at a Coronado Coffee Shop after being asked to wear a mask, is making its rounds on social media. This happened after some reports claim Coronado is beginning to grow a reputation of non-compliance when it comes to obeying the Public Health Order.

Coronado's High Tide Bottle Shop and Kitchen was closed for two weeks after one of its employees tested positive for COVID-19. Sunday was their first day back open. Manager Lynne Papaconstantinou says the mask issue not up for debate.

"We have very few people that come here and don't want to wear a mask," Papaconstantinou said. "If they don't, I just ask them to leave. If they say, 'Well then, you've lost my business,' well then, we lost your business."

At nearby Clayton's Coffee Shop, a Coronado mother who wished to remain anonymous noticed a man shouting at two teenage baristas Saturday morning. She recorded the altercation and posted the video on social media.

The woman told ABC10News that her daughter, one of the baristas, was standing behind the counter at the time. She remembered that the man became irate after being asked to wear a mask when stepping up to the counter.

"It was just such a terrible demonstration of the way some people behave and bully the folks that are most vulnerable," she said. "To 17 and 18-year-old baristas that are trying to work and behave professionally."

According to a recent Union-Tribune article, a local business group, Coronado Mainstreet, has been educating local businesses on the health order since May. It claims three have been flagged for continual non-compliance. It also states Coronado has a growing reputation of ignoring and not enforcing county health orders.

"I think it's unfortunate that this is a reputation that is developing," the employee's mother said. "People that behave like this gentleman don't help."

In response, Coronado Mayor Richard Bailey sent ABC 10News this statement:

"According to a third party report, the vast majority of businesses in Coronado are compliant with county and state health orders. The County of San Diego has publicly characterized Coronado's positive reinforcement approach as 'a great model.' Our expectation is that all local businesses and residents continue to follow the county and state health orders."
-Richard Bailey (Coronado Mayor)

Clayton's Coffee also responded to the incident on its Facebook page. A part of it reads:

“The continuous resistance to wearing masks has been disheartening. We respectfully ask all of our guests to comply with California’s orders to wear masks when at our establishment, and have given permission to our staff to respectfully require this of all guests. In order to continue to stay open for business, we must adhere to this.”
-Mary Frese (Owner, Clayton's Coffee Shop)

"I'd like for people to behave in a civilized way to each other," the Clayton's Coffee Shop employee's mother told ABC 10News. "There is a lot of heavy-duty emotion right now because of COVID. And simply doing something like donning a mask or staying six-feet from somebody because you are cognizant of potential health effects, is nothing more than human kindness. I think that is what everybody should be practicing right now.

ABC 10News reached out to Coronado Mainstreet for details about their compliance reports. They have not responded to our requests.