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Student's Father Charged in Mask Clash at High School

Demonstrator was filming his daughter trying to defy Florida district's mandate
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 25, 2021 4:12 PM CDT
Police: Man Attacked Student in Mask Clash
Students walk toward Barbara Coleman Senior High School on Monday, the first day of classes, in Miami Lakes, Florida. Miami-Dade County public schools require students to wear a mask.   (AP Photo/Marta Lavandier)

(Newser) – An anti-mask demonstrator was jailed and charged with aggravated child abuse after an officer said he shoved a student during a clash outside a Florida high school. Dan Bauman, 50, was filming his daughter's attempt to enter Fort Lauderdale High School on Wednesday morning while not wearing a mask, as he'd done for several days, NBC reports; the county's school district has a mask mandate. A student approached Bauman, said, "I've had enough for four days," and tried to take his cellphone, a Broward County Sheriff's report said. Bauman pushed her into a fence, grabbed her hand, and twisted her arm "in an aggressive manner," it said. A school resource officer and security guard pulled Bauman off the student.

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The resource officer got the confrontation on his body camera, which he had turned on when he saw Bauman because he's "known to cause disruption" about the mask policy. The state had given the school district until Tuesday to drop its mask mandate, and the district refused. In a previous interview, Bauman said his daughter won't comply with the mandate. "The school board policy is illegal, and she's not gonna put on a mask, no matter what," he said, per WTVJ. Bauman was jailed, awaiting a bond hearing. The charge carries a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison and a $10,000 fine. Bauman's daughter later said, "I think it was planned, because all the cops, all the adults, were surrounding him, grabbing him, insisting he was assaulting her," per WPLG. (Florida wants to withhold funding from school districts with mask mandates.)

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