Criminal charges have been filed against two brothers who allegedly assaulted security guards at a Southern California Target store after they refused to wear masks, the Los Angeles city attorney announced Friday.
The brothers, 31-year-old Phillip Hamilton and 29-year-old Paul Hamilton, were not wearing face coverings when they entered the retailer’s Van Nuys location on May 1 and were confronted by store employees, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.
The pair were being escorted out of the store when the fight broke out, resulting in one of the security guards suffering a broken arm.
Phillip Hamilton is charged with multiple counts of battery, including an allegation of a battery causing serious bodily injury and a count of trespassing. He could face up to a year and nine months in jail.
Paul Hamilton was also charged with multiple counts of battery and a count of trespassing. He could face up to a year and three months in jail.
"Not wearing a mask is selfish, wrong and illegal," said Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer. "We will absolutely not tolerate violence in response to appropriate efforts to assure business patrons wear face coverings. We have one common enemy—and it’s the virus, not each other."
CNN has reached out to both Hamilton brothers for comment.
Los Angeles has mandated the use of face masks in public indoor spaces since April 10 to prevent spread of coronavirus. Target has also announced that as of August 1 it will join a growing list of retailers in requiring face coverings while shopping.
The case is scheduled for a pretrial hearing in court on August 12.