A Texas woman who refused to wear a mask was handcuffed and dragged out of a bank after a brief altercation with officers.
The woman, who has since been identified as 65-year-old Terry White, can be seen in police body camera footage confronting officers over the mask wearing policy at a Bank of America branch in the city of Galveston on Thursday.
She was flouting the rules of the branch a day after Texas’ statewide mandate on mask wearing ceased — although officials say residents must comply with the requests of individual businesses.
Ms White refused to comply, and told officers she was withdrawing money from her account at Bank of America because of the mask wearing policy.
“Awesome,” the officer tells the woman in the footage. “Well, you need to go and get a mask and then take your money out.”
She continues arguing, as the officer tells her, “Ma’am, listen, we’re gonna do this the easy way or the hard way.”
“What are you going to do, arrest me?” she replies, before walking away and telling him that he’s “taking away people’s human rights.”
A struggle unfolds as the officer takes out his handcuffs, although she is eventually handcuffed on the ground.
She was afterwards taken to a medical centre in Galveston for treatment for minor injuries, police toldthe Washington Post.
Ms White, who was heard citing a “plandemic” — a conspiracy that wrongly connects Covid-19 to big pharma and Bill Gates — during the arrest, told the Post she would file a complaint with Galveston police on Monday.
“I feel like I took one for the team, because people need to wake up,” she said, criticising mask mandates.
Texas officials came under criticism for allowing a mandate on wearing masks in public to cease during the Covid pandemic, although many businesses are still believed to be enforcing similar restrictions.
The state continues to see an average of 4,540 cases per day, according to data analysis by the New York Times.