According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) COVID-19, “…spreads mainly among people who are in close contact (within about 6 feet) for a prolonged period.”
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By now, this is old news. Most of us are fully aware of the dangers of getting too close to others while the coronavirus is out there. The few times we are out and about, during any given week, most of us dutifully practice “social distancing”.
Unfortunately, some people are not down with the whole 6 feet apart rule. Sadly, some hate it so much that the mere polite attempt to enforce it sends them into a fit of rage.
The following are 10 crazy examples of social distancing gone wrong.
10 Crazed Couple Assaults Hassidic Jews
During the COVID-19 pandemic, some countries have come up with very novel and technologically advanced ways to enforce social distancing guidelines. In Singapore, for example, they have hired a robot dog (developed by Boston Dynamics) named Spot to patrol park areas and, using a polite but firm female voice, to tell citizens, “Let’s keep Singapore healthy. For your own safety, and for those around you, please stand at least one meter apart. Thank you.”
What do you do if you don’t have a robot dog available in your area to remind people to practice social distancing? Well, you definitely don’t do what a couple in Brooklyn, New York did back in early May.
Deputizing themselves as Social Distancing Officers, Paul and Clelia Pinho (AKA Kevin and Karen) then immediately went all out bonkers.
While driving in Brooklyn one Sunday night, Paul and Clelia spotted a large group of Hassidic Jews gathered together outside. The couple immediately stopped their vehicle, jumped out and rushed towards them. They hurled Anti-Semetic insults at them, saying, “You’re the reason why we’re getting sick.”
Paul called the cops and then, not content to wait for the authorities to sort this all out, tried to rip off the masks of three of the Hassidic men. That triggered a fight. The couple was then subdued by a volunteer watch group named Shomrim patrol. They held the attacking couple until the police arrived.
The couple was taken to hospital where Paul received treatment for an injury to his arm. His wife was treated for minor injuries.
Mayor Bill De Blasio was disgusted by the incident saying, “We don’t accept bias in New York City. We don’t accept hate in any form.”
9 Kissing Bandit Calls Cops On Bar
While the reasons behind some citizen attempts to police social distancing at least have a bit of logic going for them, the same cannot be said for a Florida woman named Audra Adams.
The Monkey Bar and Grille in Indialantic was the scene of this very curious, self-defeating case of social distancing gone wrong.
Upset that the bar was not practicing coronavirus social distancing guidelines, Adams called the police not one time, not two times, but five times. The weird part of it all was that Adams, herself, was repeatedly trying to kiss other bar patrons.
The bar’s owner told police that Adams’ repeated attempts to lay a smooch on every stranger within reach was, no surprise here, not going down well. After a few complaints, he asked her to leave.
Adams eventually did exit the bar, but refused to leave the parking lot, saying, “I’ll sit in the parking lot all night.”
Police ended up arresting her for disorderly conduct, resisting an officer without violence and for misusing the 911 system.
8 Supermarket Showdown
Supermarket shopping during the COVID-19 pandemic has seen many changes including: the increase of cleaning and sanitation measures; the reduction of store hours; the closing of bulk counters, soup bars, olive bars and self-serve hot tables; markings on the floor to prompt shoppers to stay 6 feet apart from one another and reserving the first hour of every day exclusively to senior citizens.
Clearly, a low stress, once a week trip to stock up on food and other essentials has now, due to the pandemic, turned into something far more tricky and far more stressful.
One poor soul found out the hard way just how much things have changed. He had just finished shopping and was heading home when he stopped and put his bags on the ground. Three men approached him. He asked them to adhere to social distancing rules. They, instead, flipped out.
One of the three, an 18 year-old man from Milton, went ballistic. A fight broke out and the 18 year-old attacker fled the scene.
Thankfully, he was found and arrested about a month later.
7 Triggered Man Pulls Out Gun
Who knew that forming a line could be so fraught with tension these days?
Waiting in line is just a fact of life. Everybody, at one time or another, has to do it and even on a good day it isn’t exactly a blast. But, wait we do.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, waiting in line has introduced another wrinkle—social distancing. For one man, that was one wrinkle too much.
While waiting in a line outside Citizens Bank in Boston, in early May of this year, Ricardio Pantojas, 40, was, apparently, too close to another customer waiting in that same line. The other customer asked Ricardio to back away and adhere to social distancing guidelines. Ricardio had other ideas.
“When asked to move away, the male suspect refusing to practice social distancing and adhere to the line restrictions, brandished a firearm and pointed it in the direction of the victims,” police said. “Before police arrived, the male suspect and a female accomplice jumped into a motor vehicle and fled the scene.”
Police later tracked down the couple. When they searched their car, they found a Bersa .380 semi-automatic.
The police hit Ricardio with a number of charges, including: carrying a loaded firearm on a public way.
6 Jogging Ain’t What It Used To Be
COVID-19 has changed our lives in a lot of ways. One of the more obvious changes has required us to stay at home much more often than we are used to. Naturally, spending most of our time inside four walls can give us a bit of cabin fever. So, trips outside, however brief, can provide a bit of relief.
For one Cambridge, Massachusetts jogger, his bit of relief turned into a bit of a nightmare.
According to the jogger, as he approached a man walking with his two young children, he told the three that he was going to jog onto the street to give them the necessary social distancing space. Then, at some point during the jogger’s explanation, the man pulled out a knife and told him to, “get the ‘expletive’ on the other side of the street.”
Later, Police did find a man that fit the jogger’s description. That man denied pulling a knife on him. The officers searched the man but did not find the weapon. Later on, however, police did find a 4 inch blade in a yard bag a short walk from where they spoke to the man.
Regardless, the jogger decided not to press charges.
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5 Doctor Diagnosed With Short Temper
Among the groups of people who have emerged as heroes during the COVID-19 pandemic, medical workers are likely the most deserving of that distinction. Though under threat of being infected themselves, by the very patients they treat, their vital work has inspired a tremendous outpouring of gratitude from the public as well as countless news items documenting their bravery.
One doctor who will definitely not receive any glowing write ups anytime soon is Dr. John Rademaker, 57, of Prospect, Kentucky. And it was all captured on video.
In the first few seconds, we see a verbal confrontation between two groups of people—an older man and a woman and several younger women. One of the young women can be heard saying, “Yeah, we’re leaving…please, let’s not cuss at each other.” Then, a few seconds later, the same young woman says, “No, I’m not calling you anything, sir, just don’t talk to us with -”
That’s when she’s cut off by Dr. Rademaker, who points a finger at a girl off screen and says, “This ‘bleep’ girl right here.” He then approaches the young women as the camera follows. Just as one of the young women says, “Do not touch -”, he does—shoving a few of them.
From there, all hell breaks loose as Dr. Rademaker approaches another young woman who is lying on the ground. Suddenly, he drops down and, according to reports, he then, “grabbed her neck.”
Panicked, the young women began screaming and yelling. Incredibly, within seconds, a simple social distancing squabble had turned into a violent attack.
In the aftermath, Dr. Rademaker was charged with first-degree strangulation and three counts of harassment with physical contact. The organization of which he was a part, The Southern Indiana Anesthesia Consultants, placed him on leave. Then, he voluntarily resigned his position.
According to three witnesses, the nine young women had come to the spot to watch the sunset.
4 Grocery Store Assault
Waiting in line at your local grocery store during the COVID-19 pandemic has become an adjustment for everyone and an ongoing exercise in trusting your fellow shopper. Everyone has to cooperate or else, the spread of COVID-19 can take place.
At one grocery store in Sydney, Australia, a woman in her late 50s was standing in line at the checkout when a man behind her got a little too close for her liking. She turned around and asked him to take a step back. The man, caught on video surveillance, didn’t take kindly to the woman’s suggestion. When she was busy paying for her groceries, he hit her in the back of the head with a bottle. The man then fled the store.
The woman was treated and taken to hospital as a precaution.
Soon afterwards, the police spotted the man in a nearby park. When they approached him, the man pulled out a meat cleaver. The police tasered and arrested him.
3 Mask Request Leads To Killing
Social distancing can be enhanced with the wearing of a mask. The Mayo Clinic advises people to wear a cloth mask because, “…cloth masks can help reduce the spread of the coronavirus by people who have COVID-19 but don’t realize it.”
Sadly, not only do some people refuse to wear a mask when out in public, but a few take such an extreme position that violence soon follows.
That is what happened at a Family Dollar store in Flint, Michigan earlier this year. A security guard, Calvin Munerlyn, 43, was just doing his job when he asked a customer to put on a mask to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Instead of complying, the woman left the store. Her mother, Sharmel Teague and Munerlyn then got into a shouting match. That’s when Munerlyn asked her to leave the store, too. She did.
At the time, under an executive order from Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, all retail employees and customers had to wear a mask.
Twenty minutes later, two men came into the store—one was Sharmel’s husband. He started yelling at Munerlyn for disrespecting his wife. The other man then pulled out a gun and shot and killed Munerlyn right then and there.
Ramonyea Travon Bishop, 23, Larry Edward Teague, 44 and Sharmel Teague, 45, were charged with first-degree premeditated murder.
Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton summed up the sad situation, saying, “From all indications, Mr. Munerlyn was simply doing his job in upholding the Governor’s Executive Order related to the COVID-19 pandemic for the safety of store employees and customers.”
Munerlyn’s distraught cousin, Tina James, added, “This is senseless. Over a mask. Over a mask? This is not the way to do things right now. We need to come together.”
A devastating loss for the community, they all came together and held a candlelight vigil in Munerlyn’s honor.
2 Man Records And Celebrates Partiers Defying Stay At Home Order
On March 22, 2020, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced a “stay-at-home order.” In Section 3 of the order, it explicitly says, “Any gathering of ten people is prohibited unless exempted by this Order.”
Not even a month later, a group of young people decided to have a party. On hand to record the festivities was 25 year-old Rashaan Davis. He not only recorded the party, he uploaded it to YouTube.
During the video, Davis can be heard saying, “”This is how we do it in my city, man. We don’t give a (expletive) about this coronavirus.” Party goers were standing on cars and dancing to the music.
In Police documents, Davis is accused of violating the stay-at-home order as well as encouraging others to violate the order.
1 Park Ranger Pushed Into Lake
Austin Parks Foundation, in Austin, Texas, took COVID-19 very seriously by releasing guidelines for citizens using their parks. Though urging people to stay at home, to those who used the parks to get some much needed fresh air, the APF recommended that they not touch playscapes, swings, tables & benches, fitness equipment, athletic equipment or water fountains.
They should have added park rangers to the list.
In a video of the incident, a park ranger can be seen, standing on the edge of a lake, calmly explaining the social distancing guidelines to a group of young people. Suddenly, out of nowhere, a guy pushes him into the water. The pusher, himself, also fell in. He quickly got out and ran away.
The video ends as the Park Ranger gets back up, exits the water and heads in the direction of the guy who pushed him in.
Later, police arrested 25 year-old Brandon Hicks with attempted assault on a public service worker and damaging city property.
Kimberly McNeeley, an Austin parks & recreation department director, issued a statement on the incident, saying, “Our rangers continue to engage residents on the proper use of park facilities during the COVID-19 pandemic. We ask that the public treat Rangers with the same respect they wish to be shown to themselves. Public support is essential for Austin to meet the challenges of this pandemic.”
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About The Author: Domenico De Luca has been writing for thirty years—screenplays, short stories and songs making up the vast majority of his output. He is a film buff with his very own blog called so many films, so little time. He is also a music addict and devoted lifelong fan of the Toronto Maple Leafs.
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