Charges Against Man Accused of Throwing Food at Store Employee Over Face Mask Policy Withdrawn

| August 1, 2020

GavelSUGARCREEK BOROUGH, Pa. (EYT) – Criminal charges against a Beaver County man accused of throwing food at an employee of a Sugarcreek Borough store after becoming angry about its face mask policy were withdrawn on Wednesday.

Court documents indicate the following charges against 42-year-old Craig Michael Gillock, of Monaca, Beaver County, Pa., were withdrawn during a hearing on Wednesday, July 29:

– Simple Assault, Misdemeanor 2
– Defiant Trespass Actual Communication To, Misdemeanor 3

One summary count of Criminal Trespass/Simple Trespasser filed against Gillock was moved to non-traffic court.

The charges stem from an incident that occurred at a business in Sugarcreek Borough, Venango County, in late May.

Details of the case:

According to a criminal complaint, around 7:31 p.m. on May 22, Sugarcreek Borough Police were dispatched to a business on Allegheny Boulevard for a report of a man who refused to leave the store when asked to do so.

At the scene, Patrolman Johnson was greeted by an agitated man who reportedly said: “You are probably here for me.” He was identified as Craig Michael Gillock.

Gillock told Patrolman Johnson that he was in the store getting food with his wife and was asked to leave because he didn’t have a mask on (which is required by the store policy due to the COVID-19 Pandemic), according to the complaint.

The complaint notes police verified the mask requirement was posted at the door of the business.

Gillock also told Patrolman Johnson that he tried to explain that he has a medical condition several times and became frustrated, then threw his food and left the store.

Gillock was then placed in custody.

Police also spoke to the victim who reported that Gillock was asked to leave because of the store’s face mask policy. She said that Gillock explained that he has a medical condition and didn’t need to wear a mask, and he was becoming agitated quickly, the complaint states.

The victim contacted the manager and she told the manager that she would help Gillock get essential food items; however, Gillock became upset and threw two food items at her which hit the register counter in front of her and bounced away, according to the complaint.

Patrolman Johnson observed the food items on the floor, which were located approximately 15 feet away from where the victim would have been standing, the complaint notes.

The victim said she was frightened because Gillock became so angry so quickly and was glad the counter was there, so the food didn’t hit her, according to the complaint.

The complaint also notes the food items were one package of fish and one package of crab meat, valued at a total of $11.59, and the items had the exterior wrappers destroyed and would be unable to be sold.

According to the complaint, Patrolman Johnson stated: “I spoke with a known individual of Mr. Gillock.  She stated that he just doesn’t like being told what to do or to wear a mask when I asked about his medical condition.”

Gillock was arraigned in front of Magisterial District Judge Matthew T. Kirtland at 9:40 p.m. on May 22.

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