Last month we told you about an assault that occurred at Hair and Wig Beauty Supply when a customer was asked to wear a mask. The person who allegedly committed the assault has been arrested.

The original incident occurred on June 12 around 5:30 p.m. at Hair and Wig Beauty Supply on Central Avenue. Police have identified 33-year old Richard Chirse, of Albany, as the subject who was confronted by a store employee and asked to wear a mask.

Mr. Chirse was captured on surveillance video being confronted by a store employee because he was not wearing a mask. Mr. Chirse could be seen punching and kicking the store employee before fleeing the scene. The store employee told the police that Mr. Chirse also made a racial slur toward him. The employee sustained minor injuries and received medical treatment that day.

According to News 10, Officers with the Albany Police Department investigated the incident for more than a month before arresting Mr. Chirse on Tuesday. He was charged with third-degree assault as a hate crime. This is considered a class A misdemeanor offense.

Mr. Chirse was out on parole at the time of the offense. Yesterday he was arraigned on the assault charges as well as a parole violation warrant. Because Mr. Chirse has an extensive criminal history and he the fact that he was charged with a hate crime, he could be sentenced to four years in jail.

These are trying times for all of us, and we all must control our tempers. Wearing a mask is definitely uncomfortable, but from what I’ve heard, COVID-19 is much more uncomfortable. We must all keep a cool head and get through these trying times without harming others or ourselves.

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