Florida Company Fires Man Seen Yelling at Costco Customers Over Mask Use in Viral Video

The Florida man filmed screaming at fellow Costco customers who asked him to wear a face mask was fired from his position at the Ted Todd Insurance company on Tuesday.

The company posted a statement about the man's termination on Twitter and its corporate website on Tuesday afternoon, one day after a video of him yelling inside a Fort Myers Costco store went viral on social media. Viewers connected the man to the insurance company through an employee profile that seemed to identify him.

Ted Todd Insurance's statement did not reference the employee by name but said a worker was terminated after the company became aware of the individual's "threatening behavior" as seen in the video.

"Thank you to everyone for their comments and messages raising awareness about a former employee at Ted Todd Insurance. Their behavior in the video is in direct conflict with our company values and their employment has been terminated," Ted Todd Insurance wrote on Twitter.

"Threatening behavior and intimidation go against our core mission to be trusted advisors in our community. We are also committed to immediately reviewing our internal existing culture at TTI," the statement added.

Earlier on Tuesday, Ted Todd Insurance CEO Charley Todd shared a similar statement on his personal Twitter account. In it, he reiterated that the employee "absolutely does not represent our values and no longer works at our agency." Todd's tweet encouraged followers to "wear a mask."

The employee profile that Twitter users said belonged to the man in Costco no longer appeared on Ted Todd Insurance's website as of Tuesday afternoon, and his LinkedIn page was deleted. Newsweek reached out to Ted Todd Insurance for additional comments but did not receive a reply in time for publication.

The company's announcement on Tuesday followed backlash from social media users who saw the video a day earlier, and their comments called for him to be fired from his job.

By Tuesday afternoon, close to 7 million people had watched the video, which showed a man advancing toward Costco customers and shouting "I feel threatened" when one asked him to wear a face covering and another defended the woman making the suggestion. It was originally posted to Twitter on Monday by documentary film director Billy Corben.

"Florida man at Fort Myers Costco in 'Running the World Since 1776' shirt flips out on elderly woman who asked him to wear a mask and man who defended her," Corben captioned the original video on Twitter.

He later confirmed in a comment that the incident took place at Fort Myers' Gulf Coast Town Center on June 27. One of the customers subjected to the man's shouting told Corben that Costco staff "escorted him out" after it happened.

In May, Costco, like many commercial establishments, said it was requiring all customers to wear masks while inside company stores in order to protect against transmission of the coronavirus. Cases have been surging across Florida in recent weeks.

Miami Costco
A Costco store in Miami. An employee of the Ted Todd Insurance company was seen in a viral video yelling at customers who asked him to wear a mask inside a Fort Myers Costco and has since been fired. MICHELE EVE SANDBERG/AFP via Getty Images