GALVESTON, Texas (KTRK) — Just a day after Texas rolled back COVID-19 restrictions, including those mandating face coverings in public, a woman’s arrest has emerged stemming from her refusal to wear a mask.
Body camera footage released by Galveston police shows officers confronting the woman inside a Bank of America branch on Central City Boulevard.
The footage, taken on Thursday, begins with an officer being directed by a bank manager to the woman. The officer encounters the woman who expresses frustration over being told to wear a mask, invoking the state’s lifted mandate.
However, the officer is heard reminding the woman that businesses can refuse service to anyone that does not comply with masking policies, which is something that Gov. Greg Abbott still allowed.
WATCH FULL VIDEO BELOW:
After the woman said she wants to take her money out from the bank, the officer tells her to go get a mask and come back to do so.
With the woman giving pushback, the officer says, “Ma’am, listen, we can do this the easy way or the hard way.”
“What are you going to do? Arrest me?” she asks. “That’s hilarious.”
The confrontation escalates with the woman raising her voice at other bank customers, and that’s when it becomes physical.
The woman is taken down to the ground and arrested.
You can watch the full encounter in the video player above.
Police identified the woman as 65-year-old Terry White, who was arrested on a charge of resisting arrest and criminal trespass. Officers added she sustained minor injuries and was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment.
In an interview Friday with Eyewitness News, White said she traveled to Galveston in an RV to cross off items off her bucket list. She was at the bank to close her account and the Central City location was the only one that was open to her.
She said she would have preferred to go through a drive-thru but couldn’t with her RV. Still, she says, she’s glad she stood her ground, adding that she is “very opposed” to masks and doesn’t believe in the pandemic.
“I won’t wear that diaper on my face!” she told ABC13.
Woman arrested by Galveston PD speaks with Eyewitness News over her confrontation
White’s arrest came a day after Texas officially lifted mandates statewide over virus prevention protocols. In lifting those mandates, Gov. Abbott put controls over protections back in the hands of individual businesses, but reminded Texans that personal responsibility is key with the coronavirus still rampant.
Legally, individual businesses are allowed to set their own safety protocols against the coronavirus, and, like in White’s case, can refuse service to patrons who don’t abide by policy.
Eyewitness News has reached out to Bank of America for comment on the arrest.
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(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by WCT staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)