VIDEO: Mom Arrested After Allegedly Refusing to Wear Mask at School Board Meeting

A parent was arrested Tuesday after officials say she refused to wear a mask at a school board meeting in Pinellas County, Florida.

“Several parents argued against the district’s mask policy during a school board hearing,” ABC Action News reported.

A district spokesperson said Kari Turner was arrested for Trespassing, Battery on a Law Enforcement Officer, and Disorderly Conduct.

“The individual refused to wear a mask which began a series of events that led to the arrest,” the Pinellas County Schools explained in a statement.

Video footage reportedly showed Turner on the ground inside the lobby as officers put her in handcuffs.

Several parents alleged that as they left the meeting, school district police stopped them and said they had to put on masks to walk through the building, according to the Tampa Bay Times.

“Opponents to Pinellas’ masking rule have raised a number of objections, some based on health concerns for their children and others saying face coverings are not necessary, given the low incidence of COVID-19 illness and death in the community,” the report continued.

Parent Shannon Brooks said the masks are “water-boarding our children,” while parent Heidi Hilliard Natole stated, “You have taken away our God-given rights.”

However, Superintendent Michael Grego said, “This has become political but none of this has ever been a political discussion either with myself or this board.”

According to the school district’s website, masks “must be worn by all students, staff and individuals on campus, to the maximum extent possible.”

“Recognizing that it may be difficult for students to wear masks/face coverings continuously throughout an entire school day, staff will be trained to allow for safe ‘mask/face covering breaks’ and will work to balance safety with the students’ social-emotional wellbeing,” the site continued.

The board voted four to one to continue the district’s mask policy, but will revisit the issue every three months, according to the ABC report.


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