Verizon is asking the public to help them identify a woman who assaulted an employee and shouted a racial slur after refusing to wear a face mask inside a Verizon store on the Upper East Side around 5 p.m. on Thursday.
The disturbing incident was captured on video at their East 69th Street and Third Avenue location by a customer who commended the employees for "maintaining professionalism" as the woman flies into a violent, bigoted rage. (Warning: the video contains graphic language and a racial slur.)
The video shows the woman accusing an employee of "grabbing her hand" and calling her a "bitch" when she tries to take one of the store's phone chargers from her. The employee calmly responds that she did not touch her, to which the customer responds by throwing a metal bin at her face and threatening to beat her.
As another employee tells her to leave the store, the customer further insults the workers, screams that she's "not walking around the goddamn f--king city with no data," falsely accuses the employees of "enforcing illegal laws," and finally shouts a racial slur at one of them as the video ends.
An NYPD spokesperson confirmed that a female employee at the Verizon store was injured by a customer who threw a small metal bin at her face after refusing multiple requests to wear a face mask. The employee was taken to NY Presbyterian Hospital with minor injures. No arrests have been made, according to the spokesperson, but an investigation is ongoing.
Verizon is hoping the woman can be identified so she can be banned "for life from entering our stores and terminate her ability to do business with us," the company said in a statement. "We will not tolerate behavior like this."
As of Sunday afternoon, a Verizon spokesperson said the woman in the video has not been identified; anyone who recognizes her is asked to call Verizon security at 800-483-0722.
In-store shopping was permitted to resume in NYC on June 22nd with limited capacity and a requirement that all customers and employees wear face coverings. The increased use of face coverings has been credited by health experts as a major factor in slowing the spread of the deadly coronavirus, which has killed nearly 200,000 people in the United States so far. Nevertheless, a stubborn anti-mask sentiment persists among some Americans, and President Donald Trump has continued to send mixed messages about the importance of wearing face masks.
Earlier this month, a Bay Ridge couple was ejected from a NYC ferry for refusing multiple requests to wear a face covering.