CHICAGO (CBS) — A no-mask wearing incident inside an Edgewater gym got real ugly real fast. The man who pushed and then jabbed his finger into another man’s chest has been charged with two misdemeanors.
CBS 2’s Steven Graves reports it all started with a request to put on a mask. The trainer involved in the incident said he first asked a customer to put on a mask, and then asked him to wear it properly, until things eventually escalated.READ MORE: Chicago Weather: Colder And Blustery Sunday Night
The video filmed by the Anytime Fitness gymgoers last Thursday in Edgewater is a just snippet; roughly five minutes of a confrontation that lasted hours.
“If you had just kept your f*****g mouth shut, and not played games, I’d be working out,” said a man who was angry over a trainer enforcing the requirement to wear a mask. “It’s a joke. You’re ruining my f*****g country.”
Trainer Adrian Aguilar held his hands up as the man pushed him, hurling expletives.
“Hands up, knowing that that would send him the signal ‘I don’t want to hurt you. I don’t want to fight you. I don’t want to come close to you,’” Aguilar said.
Aguilar said the argument came after two prior attempts to get the man to wear a mask.
“We’re very strict about mask protocol,” Aguilar said.READ MORE: Shedd Aquarium Asks Restaurants To Help Keep Plastic Out Of Great Lakes
The trainer said signs are posted “everywhere” at Anytime Fitness, informing customers of the gym’s mask requirement.
Later in the video, the man police have identified as Anthony Myers claimed he was wearing a mask when he needed to.
“It was on when I was working out. It’s down because I’m dealing with this s***,” he said in the video of the incident.
Aguilar, the only staff member on hand at the time, said he and Myers called police, but officers arrested Myers after seeing the footage.
The video has since been seen by thousands on social media. Aguilar said many commenters have said they would have fought Myers.
“I hope that this is a good example to show that you don’t have to, and violence is not the answer,” he said.
Police said Myers faces misdemeanor charges of trespassing and battery. He’s due to appear in court on April 6.MORE NEWS: Outbound Kennedy Expressway Ramp To Montrose Avenue Reopens Monday
CBS 2 is still trying to contact Myers for his side of the story. Meantime, the gym said he will not be allowed back.