Woman coughs on bartender after asked to wear face mask at Peninsula restaurant, surveillance shows

ByDion Lim and Cornell Barnard KGO logo
Monday, June 29, 2020
Woman coughs on bartender after asked to wear face mask in Belmont restaurant
Employees of a Peninsula bar and restaurant are searching for a woman seen on surveillance video who coughed on a bartender who asked her to wear a face mask while inside amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

BELMONT, Calif. (KGO) -- Employees at a restaurant and bar on the Peninsula are furious over the actions of a recent customer, who they say refused to wear a face mask, and then coughed on a bartender in protest. The incident was all caught on surveillance camera.

"She was just upset people were telling her she had to play by new rules," said Bartender Misha Marotta.

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Employees at St. James Gate restaurant and pub in Belmont are hoping to identify a recent customer who behaved badly.

Marotta says the disturbing incident happened on June 19, the same day they got the ok to start serving indoors with masks and social distancing required.

"This lady kept hugging everyone in the bar and not wearing a mask," said Marotta.

Misha's co-worker behind the bar asked the woman to comply.

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Surveillance cameras captured what happened next, the woman leans in and appears to cough directly in the face of the bartender, who steps back in shock and disbelief.

"It was very disgusting, on a couple of levels," Marotta said.

Marotta told the woman to leave.

She did but not before giving the bartenders the middle finger, then knocking down a barstool before heading out the door.

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General Manager Bobbie Martinez can't believe the video.

"It's not nice to do that, he was enforcing the guidelines and she refused to follow it," Martinez said.

Employees haven't filed a police report, they say it's not their intention to have the unidentified woman arrested or cited, only to know what she did is unacceptable.

"I think if she reflects on this, maybe she can realize she can be better," said Marotta.

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