Alleged San Diego Navy SEAL Berates 17-Year-Old Coronado Barista Over Mask Requirement

July 19, 2020

In a now viral video posted to Reddit over the weekend, an alleged Navy SEAL officer can be seen scolding what people are reporting is a 17-year-old female Coronado coffee shop employee over the establishment's enforcement of the San Diego facial covering policy.

"Now I've been coming here since 2009, k, that's first," scolded an irate customer of Clayton's Coffee Shop in Coronado in a video posted online. "Second, if I ever see that guy again who talked to me like that, I will never, ever. I will tell everyone at the teams never to go back here again, including the dudes in BUDS."

The one-minute, 46-second video entitled "Navy SEAL Karen loses it at restaurant worker" was posted to Reddit on Saturday, July 18, and shows a man who identifies as a Navy SEAL pointing and yelling through a walk up window at Clayton's Coffee Shop in Coronado. The man was apparently upset over how a male employee spoke to him and his group with regard to wearing a facial covering, which can be seen draped over one of the man's ears. The video was subsequently posted to local Facebook Group, Coronado Happenings, allegedly by the mother of the Clayton's employee, where it was stated that the person on the other side of the window was a 17-year-old female. Several individuals in the online group, which has more than 23,000 members, confirmed they knew the man featured in the video and that he was, in fact, a Navy SEAL.
Navy SEAL Karen loses it at restaurant worker. from r/FuckYouKaren
"I'm going over to Starbucks, which I cant stand!", the man exclaimed at one point. "But now, I'm never coming back here."

On June 24, 2020, U.S. Fleet Forces issued updated guidance and direction to U.S. Navy personnel within the continental United States regarding health protection and the Navy’s response to coronavirus. In it, service members are asked to minimize unnecessary in-person use curb-side and drive through services, as well as to "[m]aintain a physical distance of at least six (6) feet from others when you are in close contact for fifteen (15) or more minutes, and to the maximum extent practical, wear cloth face coverings when you are in close contact with others for fifteen (15) or more minute and are unable to maintain six (6) feet of physical distance.

"There was an unfortunate event that occurred yesterday at our Coffee Shop takeout window," wrote Clayton's Coffee owner Mary Frese to the company's social media. "The continuous resistance to wearing masks has been disheartening. We respectfully ask all of our guests to comply with California’s orders to wear masks when at our establishment, and have given permission to our staff to respectfully require this of all guests. In order to continue to stay open for business, we must adhere to this. Please wear a mask and maintain social distancing when visiting Clayton’s, and all businesses who are trying their best to keep the public safe."

In San Diego, facial coverings have been required since May 1 whenever entering public spaces where people will come within 6 feet of non-household members. On June 18, California Governor Gavin Newsom announced a statewide order requiring people to wear face coverings while in public or high-risk settings.

We contacted the San Diego Navy office regarding the incident, and they refused to give the sailor's identity over the phone. We further reached out by email to the local Navy Public Affairs Office but did not receive a response by the time of publication.

This is a developing story. We will update the post as we learn more.