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Wednesday, Oct 4, 2023

City Charges Non-Mask Wearers Who Fought Security Guards

Following a physical altercation over wearing masks at a Van Nuys Target store, two brothers have been charged with battery and trespass. Phillip Hamilton II, 31 and Paul Hamilton, 29, on May 1 allegedly refused to wear masks in the Target at 5711 Sepulveda Blvd., according to a statement from L.A. City Attorney Mike Feuer’s office on Friday. As the brothers were escorted out of the store, one brother allegedly punched a security guard, sparking a “knock-down drag-out fight,” the city attorney’s office said in the statement. One of the guards broke his arm in the brawl and was taken to the hospital for treatment, the statement added. “Not wearing a mask is selfish, wrong and illegal,” Feuer said in the statement. “We will absolutely not tolerate violence in response to appropriate efforts to assure business patrons wear face coverings. We have one common enemy — and it’s the virus, not each other.” Phillip Hamilton II was charged with multiple counts of battery, including battery causing serious bodily injury, and one count of trespass. Paul Hamilton was also charged with multiple counts of battery and one count of trespass. If convicted, both brothers could face more than a year in jail, the city attorney’s office said. The city has required individuals to wear masks since April 10 to contain the spread of COVID-19. Starting Aug. 1, Target Corp. will join a growing list of retailers mandating masks for customers at all of its locations across the U.S.

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