An Ohio woman attending an outdoor middle school football game on Wednesday was arrested and tased for not wearing a mask while watching the game.
The incident, which occurred at Logan High School in Logan, Ohio was captured on video, and has since gone viral. According to a Logan Police Department statement, during 7th and 8th-grade football games on Wednesday evening, School Resource Officer Chris Smith had asked a woman in attendance, identified as Alecia Kitts, to put on a mask, in accordance with school policy. She reportedly refused, citing her asthma.
Officer Smith repeated his warnings before telling her she would be cited for trespassing and escorted from the game. After Kitts continued to refuse Smith’s orders, he attempted to arrest her, pulling her hands behind her back to handcuff her.
As Kitts resisted Smith’s attempts to handcuff her, the rest of her family cleared from the bench and the struggle continued.
“Get off of me. I will not put my hands behind my back. I’m not criminally doing nothing wrong,” Kitts can be heard saying in the video of the incident.
Officer Smith eventually pulls out a taser and presses it into Kitt’s shoulder, shocking her.
As Kitts is eventually escorted off the bleachers, another unmasked is seen running over to assist Smith. Officer Smith’s mask also appeared to have fallen down from over his face during the struggle.
In a Facebook post, the woman who videotaped the incident, Tiffany Kennedy, noted both officers lacked a mask, and criticized the incident as “police brutality at its finest.”
According to the Logan Police Department, Kitts was charged with Criminal Trespassing and released at the scene. Additional charges are pending against Kitts and another woman involved in the incident.
The LPD statement says, “It is important to note, the female was not arrested for failing to wear a mask, she was asked to leave the premises for continually violating school policy.” The school policy in question requires people to wear a mask while on school property.
The LPD stated, “This is an unfortunate incident for everyone involved. The incident remains under investigation.”
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine issued a statewide mask order in July, which requires people in Ohio to wear masks in public. The order states “All individuals in Ohio must wear facial coverings in public at all times when . . .Outdoors, but unable to maintain six-foot social distance from people who are not household members.”
According to ABC6, Logan-Hocking schools were placed on lockdown Thursday after receiving threats following the Wednesday arrest incident. Superintendent Monte Bainter reportedly said none of the threats have been founded or credible but the schools were taking the lockdown precautions to be safe.
The statewide mask order also includes other limited exemptions, including for those with a medical condition.
In August, the Ohio Department of Health issued a health order requiring all K-12 children to wear masks. The order does not mention any exemptions for medical conditions, but cites a joint letter from the Ohio Children’s Hospital Association and American Academy of Pediatrics Ohio Chapter which states, “there are no diagnoses that warrant blanket exemptions from wearing a face covering/mask. Specifically, asthma, allergies and sinus infections are not a contraindication for using a face covering/mask.