Florida insurance agent fired after Costco coronavirus mask confrontation
FORT MYERS, Fla. -- A man has been fired from his job after a video surfaced on social media of him lashing out at an elderly woman who asked him to wear a mask during a heated confrontation at a Costco in Fort Myers, Florida.
In the video post on Twitter, the man screams an expletive-ridden tirade telling the woman and a man who appears to be defending her to back up and stop harassing him and his family after he was asked to put on a mask and stay 6 feet away.
"You're harassing me?" the man says as he clenches his fists, to which the other man replies, "I'm not harassing you, you're coming close to me."
The man continues to approach the pair, yelling, "I feel threatened, I feel threatened! Back up! Threaten me again! Back the f--- up, put your f---ing phone down."
According to Twitter reports, one of the customers who was targeted said: "To give Costco the credit, they escorted him out and made me wait inside and monitored him until he left and then they sent someone with me to the car to make sure I'm okay."
The man in the video was identified as a former employee at Florida-based Ted Todd Insurance by the insurance company's CEO.
The insurance company's CEO, Charley Todd, said on Twitter that the man's behavior in the video is "in direct conflict with our company values" and that his employment has been terminated.
"Threatening behavior and intimidation go against our core mission to be trusted advisors in our community," Todd added. "We are also committed to immediately reviewing our internal existing culture at TTI. We ask that further concerns, questions, and any other feedback be sent to HR@tedtoddinsurance.com"
While a spokesperson for Costco declined to comment on the incident, the company has had a strict policy since May 4 requiring its customers to wear facial coverings to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus, according to a statement on its website.
“We know some members may find this inconvenient or objectionable, but under the circumstances we believe the added safety is worth any inconvenience,” Costco President and CEO Craig Jelinek said. "This is not simply a matter of personal choice; a face covering protects not just the wearer but others, too."
The man in the video is the latest Costco customer who has gone viral for not wearing a mask following a similar incident that occurred at a Costco store last month.