REPUBLICAN activist Candace Owens claimed she and her husband were stopped by cops in a Washington D.C. Whole Foods for not wearing face masks.
According to a video posted Tuesday, Owens said she was not made aware of a mandate from the mayor issued last week that requires face masks in grocery stores – posting her grievance in a fuming rant.
Alongside practising other coronavirus social distancing measures such as remaining at least six feet away from other customers, Mayor Muriel Bowser’s mandate signed on April 8 requires all patrons “wear a mask or mouth covering.”
The order went into effect in Washington D.C. on April 9 – but shoppers were not required to wear masks in stores until Monday, NBC reported.
Owens – who is known for her pro-Trump views and attacks on Democrats and Black Lives Matter – first tweeted about being stopped by police.
“WOW. Just had a police officer called over to me and my husband at Whole Foods bc we were not wearing masks,” she tweeted.
“We come to this @WholeFoods EVERY DAY. Apparently beginning yesterday, it is now illegal to come in without a mask. Total deaths in D.C from Covid? 69.
“WTF if going on?” Owens questioned.
The former conservative nonprofit worker for Turning Point later shared her story in a video posted to Periscope, titled “Police enforcement @wholefoods? #coronavirus is spiraling into tyranny.”
“Today I go to Whole Foods and there is a police officer there,” Owens said.
“I do want to be clear here that I’m not here to attack police officers,” she added.
“On the way in… she (the police officer) said ‘You guys have to wear your masks.'”
Owens added: “I said ‘I don’t have a mask. I haven’t bought one.'”
“I didn’t race to buy toilet paper… I’m not a part of like, the corona crazies you know. I’m not a part of the tin foil hat, bunkering in my basement. I’m just living my life.”
Owens said the police officer then told her she would have to cover her mouth as she shopped in the store.
“We must’ve been in the store for like, four minutes picking some stuff, and the police officer chases me down and she says that she’s getting complaints that I don’t have a mask on.”
Although health experts originally recommended only sick people wear face masks in public, at the beginning of April the CDC updated its guidelines to recommend everyone wear face coverings in public.
The CDC noted that many people who have the virus may be “asymptomatic” – or may not have developed symptoms yet, even though they’ve contracted the virus – so the agency updated the guidelines.
“First of all, if you’re going to have a mandate, you better supply them – I’m not spending my money on getting masks,” she continued.
It “makes no sense” because “deaths have gone down.”
“We have not seen an outbreak of COVID-19. We have not seen an increase in deaths.
“This is just erratic. This is just a game of Simon Says,” she added, noting that the death toll in Washington D.C. is 69 – which she said is “extremely, extremely low.”
With a population of roughly 702,000, D.C. has confirmed 2,058 cases of coronavirus.
As of Tuesday, the U.S had registered more than 589,000 cases of the virus. More than 25,000 Americans have died.
Despite the numbers, Owens said having to wear a mask was “absolutely crazy.”
“This is now budding into something that is tyrannical. This is not a quarantine. This is a house arrest.”
She continued fuming, questioning why cases are concentrated into New York City, and saying that people’s freedoms are being infringed upon.
“I will challenge someone to try and arrest me for not wearing a mask. Because I’m not doing that,” she said.
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