A New York man is facing 90 days in prison after he refused to wear a mask at his kid’s outdoor baseball game.
Chad Hummel of Rochester, New York, was arrested last week and charged with criminal trespassing after he refused to mask-up at his son’s East Ridge High School baseball game in accordance with Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo’s controversial and inconsistent COVID-19 rules.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has estimated that outdoor COVID-19 transmission stands at just 10%. But even that low estimation is misleadingly high, according to a report from The New York Times. Still, Cuomo is forcing New Yorkers to comply with the mandate.
Hummel, a lawyer, spoke to News10NBC this week and suggested he was being targeted with the arrest and criminal charge, noting that he’s spoken out against critical race theory and COVID-19 restrictions, even involving himself in lawsuits for the school district.
“Someone who has fought critical race theory at the school, someone who has fought the COVID regulations at the district, someone who has been involved in lawsuits for the school district, someone who has done all that is a target,” Hummel told the news station.
“Hummel sent a nine-page cease and desist letter to the school’s athletic director in response to the COVID-19 guidelines on masks at games,” News10NBC reported.
The father has been met with support from folks in the community fed up with the masking mandates, particularly the outdoor mandates that do not jive with the science.
Local county health commissioner Dr. Michael Mendoza, for example, says CDC guidelines should not mandate masks outdoors at all.
“Except for those close conversations, those gatherings we’re still a little on the fence about football games where everyone is yelling but casual settings, but I’ve been seeing and the evidence is there that it’s incredibly more safe outside than it is indoors,” Mendoza said, according to News10NBC.
The East Irondequoit School District acknowledged in a statement that they called the police on Hummel while his son was playing baseball over the mask issue, adding that their mask guidance was implemented as part of their reopening plan and is “reinforced by NYSDOH (New York State Department of Health)” guidance.
“The school district adopted a policy in August 2020 as part of reopening its schools for students five days a week,” the district said. “This policy and plan required students, staff and visitors to wear a mask when on school grounds. This policy was reinforced by NYSDOH recent guidance which requires that masks be worn while on all New York State public school properties. The children and staff have complied with the policy all year.”
“Mr. Hummel chose to violate the school mask policy,” the statement added. “He was asked to wear a mask. He refused. He was asked to leave the property. He refused. The police were called to assist. The police removed him from the school property.”
Hummel is set to be back in court on June 2.