Anti-Mask Mayoral Candidate Caught on Camera Assaulting Store Employee

In a bizarre series of events, Calgary mayoral candidate and anti-masker Kevin J. Johnston was filmed performing a "citizen's arrest" before being arrested himself.

Videos posted to Twitter and Instagram documented the ordeal, which began when Johnston attempted to buy soap at Dave's No Frills grocery store in Dawson's Creek, British Columbia. Refusing to wear a mask, Johnston was asked repeatedly by staff to leave, as is standard protocol.

The conflict spilled into the parking lot, where a passer-by caught Johnston assaulting one of the store employees on camera. The video shows Johnston shoving his phone into the employee's face, prompting the employee to bat his arm away. Johnston responds by punching the employee in the face.

It was missing this part, which is probably why he was arrested

— cm (@Crackmacs) March 26, 2021

A second video, which was filmed and posted to Instagram by Johnston and an associate, documents the aftermath of the altercation. This video, which later went viral on Reddit, shows Johnston attempting to make a "citizen's arrest" on the same employee, alleging assault—presumably in reference to when the employee batted Johnston's arm. Meanwhile, the employee calls the police on Johnston.

"You're under arrest for assault," Johnston says to the employee, who ignores him.

"I have to take this man into custody," Johnston insists to the camera, grabbing the employee's elbow. "This is a citizen's arrest for assault times two!"

The conflict between Johnston and the employee continues while they wait for the police to arrive—each believing the other will be arrested. A passerby attempts to intervene, and Johnston places him under "citizen's arrest" as well.

Johnston, however, is shocked when police arrive and immediately put him in handcuffs. In the video, Johnston protests his arrest on assault charges as an officer leads him to the police vehicle. "Guys," he pleads, "I have made a citizen's arrest."

"You guys have to take him into custody now," Johnston tells the officers, referring to the store employee.

"No, we don't," replies the officer.

The incident at Dave's No Frills is not Johnston's first brush with the law. In May 2019, Johnston was ordered to pay $2.5 million in damages to Mohamad Fakih, after making Islamophobic comments about his restaurant chain in "videos and online posts." Johnston was charged with a hate crime due to his "hateful," and "horrific" comments.

Johnston also appears to have political aspirations. According to a statement made on his Instagram account last week, Johnston is running for mayor of Calgary in their upcoming fall election. In the meantime, Johnston—who is self-described on his website as "Canada's MOST CENSORED MAN"—continues to post videos of himself entering businesses without his mask.

Please Wear Masks Sign
In an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19, establishments across the globe are requiring that customers wear masks. Ira L. Black/Getty Images