Did Tampa’s Mayor Say That Mask Violations Would Be Handled by Police?

After the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ Super Bowl victory on Sunday, Tampa Mayor Jane Castor held a press conference, during which several viral social media posts claimed she said individuals not wearing face masks at the Super Bowl would be “identified” and “handl[ed]” by the police.


The claim was picked up by news outlets such as Newsweek, the Daily Caller, and the Washington Examiner.

Breaking 911’s video of Castor is deceptively edited, with three clips obviously spliced together, removing important context to make it seem as if Castor was speaking about masks throughout. The transcript of the Breaking 911 video reads:

“Everyone knows that simply wearing a mask dramatically reduces the spread of COVID-19 and I’m proud to say that the majority of individuals that I saw out and about enjoying the festivities associated with the Super Bowl were complying. … You know we had tens of thousands of people all over this city, downtown out by the stadium, Ybor City, down here in Channelside, and very, very few incidents. So, I’m proud of our community, but those few bad actors will be identified and the Tampa police department will handle it. … There just has to be that level of personal responsibility. You can supply everyone with a mask, advise them of the science behind it, and expect that they are going to abide by the mask order. Again, you’re going to find a few that don’t. A majority that I saw were wearing masks.”

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