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Woman reportedly hauls off and slaps grocery store employee after the worker asks her to mask up


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Image source: KDVR-TV video screenshot

Authorities are seeking a woman in Colorado after she reportedly struck a grocery clerk who requested the woman put on a face mask while shopping inside the store.

What are the details?

According to KDVR-TV, the Parker Police Department is looking for the female suspect — who the store says is a regular customer — for questioning about the incident that took place earlier this month.

The station noted that employees regularly have to tell the woman — who has reportedly claimed to be medically exempt from wearing a face covering in public — to mask up.

The unnamed victim told police that the woman verbally harassed her, calling her a vulgar name.

"The worker told police she offered other options for the customer to buy groceries," KDVR reported. "The suspect has not been seen at the store since running off last week."

Surveillance footage captured the moment a female grocery store worker approached the woman, who is unmasked, as she shops inside the store. Seconds later, she can be seen slapping the employee.

The employee said that she is looking for the unnamed customer to be charged with harassment in connection with the incident.

Police are asking anyone who recognizes the woman to come forward with information on the purported attack.

On Wednesday, the Parker Police Department tweeted about the incident, writing, "We need your help to ID a suspect. The Cottonwood King Soopers employee said they were slapped by the suspect, Feb 3 at approx 5:50 pm. The suspect refused to wear a mask despite being asked several times & ran from the store afterward. email btberry@parkeronline.org w/info."

Anything else?

Kim Cordova, who is president of the area United Food and Commercial Workers Union, said that the customer's actions were unconscionable.

“Grocery workers are Essential Heroes and have been on the frontlines during this entire pandemic at great personal risk," Cordova told the station. "They deserve to work in safe environments but unfortunately that hasn't been the case. They often deal with customers who refuse to wear masks, overcrowded stores, and stores that lack appropriate and adequate cleaning supplies, among other dangers to their personal safety. To avoid assaults by customers in the future, employers need to provide paid qualified security guards at stores."

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