As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, state guidelines on reopening businesses and public accommodations require residents to wear masks or face coverings indoors, even while entering eateries and restaurants to pick up food orders.
However, as the virus spreads, so does the movement against wearing masks. In Bayonne, two men caused a commotion this week after refusing to wear a mask.
On July 20, a man was denied service at a local McDonald’s for not wearing a face covering. As a result, he allegedly caused a commotion that led to his arrest.
According to police, Noel Villot, 58, was taken into custody at approximately 7:10 p.m. from McDonald’s at 537 Broadway for behaving erratically after being denied service for not wearing a face covering, police said.
Responding officers arrived and ordered him to leave the restaurant, per the manager’s wishes.
Villot allegedly became aggressive and began yelling obscenities at the officers and employees, causing patrons to become alarmed, according to authorities.
After refusing the officers’ commands to cease his incendiary behavior, he was taken into custody.
Villot, from Brooklyn, was charged with disorderly conduct.
Another mask refusal incident
A 51-year-old man from New York was arrested after allegedly spitting at and biting cops in an ambulance, refusing to wear a mask in the ambulance.
James Watson was taken into custody at 10:39 a.m. on July 22 from the area of 21st Street and Avenue E.
Officers in the area were flagged down by EMS personnel who advised them that the patient in the ambulance, later identified as Watson, had become unruly and refused orders to exit the ambulance after refusing to wear a face mask.
When the officers approached him to speak with him, he became increasingly irate and began spitting inside the ambulance, police said.
He then removed an item from the wall of the ambulance and threw it, according to police. The officers attempted to subdue Watson but were met with physical resistance.
During the struggle, Watson attempted to bite both officers, making contact with one of them and breaking the skin, police said.
As other officers responded, Watson was unable to be controlled. Police said this caused an officer to deploy a short burst of pepper spray.
As officers attempted to handcuff him, Watson allegedly lay on his hands, refusing to be handcuffed. Watson was eventually handcuffed and taken to the hospital for treatment.
Watson was charged with aggravated assault and resisting arrest.
The injured officer received treatment for the bite and a hand injury.
On July 8, Gov. Phil Murphy expanded the mandate by requiring masks be worn by residents while outdoors due to the rising rate of transmission of COVID-19 in New Jersey.
According to the CDC, studies have shown that masks or face coverings help prevent the spread of the virus.
For updates on this and other stories, check www.hudsonreporter.com and follow us on Twitter @hudson_reporter. Daniel Israel can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.