A security guard at a Family Dollar store in Flint, Michigan, was fatally shot in the head after a confrontation with a woman and two other male accomplices over a face mask. The woman has been apprehended but the male suspects are on the run.
According to NBC25News, the incident occurred when the victim, Calvin James Munerlyn, 43, got into an altercation with the woman and her daughter after telling the latter it was required of her to wear a face mask while in the store.
As part of the state’s revised stay at home order which came into effect on April 26, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer made it mandatory for residents who can “medically tolerate a face covering” to wear them when in public places to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
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The confrontation ended with the woman being ejected from the store after she spat on Munerlyn. After leaving the premises, the woman later returned with two men who were identified as her husband, Larry Edward Teague Jr., 43, and her son, Ramonyea Travon Bishop, 23. The male suspects then went ahead to confront Munerlyn for disrespecting the woman and during their exchange, Bishop pulled out a gun and shot Munerlyn in the head.
The police are currently in search of Teague and Bishop, who they claim to be armed and dangerous. All suspects, including the woman in custody, have been charged with first degree premeditated murder and face up to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole, prosecutors say, NBC25News reports.
Munerlyn, who succumbed to his injuries after being transported to the hospital, was described as a “good guy” by Genesee County Commissioner, Bryant Nolden.
“Calvin was a great guy. …He was just an all-around good guy. When I found out what had happened to him, it really broke my heart because I knew what kind of person he was,” Nolden said, according to Detroit Free Press. “This was extremely senseless over a mask. …We need to stop the senseless violence in the community. This was totally uncalled for, he didn’t bother a soul. All he wanted to do was take care of his family and he always had his kids with him. This is a real loss for this community and really it’s a big loss for me as an individual.”
“Decisions like staying home when we can, wearing a mask when going to the store and staying a safe distance from those around us, these should not be political arguments,” Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton said about the incident. “They don’t necessitate acts of defiance and we simply cannot devolve into an us-versus-them mentality.”
“We really need to make a commitment as a community … to doing the things necessary to allow us to stay healthy and turn the page on this crisis altogether. If not for ourselves, we should do this for Calvin Munerlyn, who has lost his life needlessly and senselessly.”
Munerlyn’s family has set up a GoFundMe to help raise funds for his burial.
“[Calvin] was a hard working, father and husband who lost his life while doing his job securing the place of business and asking all customers to wear a mask for our own safety as well as others. He leaves behind 8 amazing kids, a super loving wife, & his wonderful mother,” his family said.