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Staples customer who told woman to wear mask is thrown to ground, has broken leg

NBC News logo NBC News 8/1/2020 Janelle Griffith
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A 54-year-old New Jersey woman suffered a broken leg after she was thrown to the ground in a Staples by another customer whom she had told to wear a mask, authorities said.

Police have released surveillance video from the incident that occurred at about 3:19 p.m. Wednesday at a Staples in Hackensack.

Margot Kagan, of Teaneck, told police she was using a fax machine at the store when a woman with a mask pulled down below her mouth approached a machine next to her. Kagan, who, according to police, had a liver transplant four months ago and was walking with a cane, told the woman to put her mask on.

"The suspect became angry and yelled at the victim, who picked up her walking cane and pointed it directly at the suspect, coming within inches of the suspect's chest," said Capt. Darrin DeWitt, a detective with the Hackensack Police Department.

The woman then yelled at Kagan, violently threw her to the ground and left the store, DeWitt said.

Kagan was taken to a hospital where she was diagnosed with a fractured left tibia, according to DeWitt.

Spokespeople for Staples did not immediately respond to phone and email requests for comment.

Gov. Phil Murphy has said all residents must wear face coverings in stores.

Police are seeking to identify the suspect.

Kagan did not immediately respond to a voicemail message and multiple calls seeking comment Friday.

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