A viral video has been making its rounds on the internet with many differing opinions on the matter. A restaurant owner was fed up with people smoking around the patio of his restaurant, so when he approached a man smoking and refused to put his cigarette out, he sprayed the smoker in the face with a fire extinguisher.
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Alex Jamison, who owns a restaurant in Utah, was recorded spraying the man in the face last Friday. Jamison had one main concern: Smokers had to be 25 feet away from a business, which is a state law, accoridng to Fox News.
Jamison approached Jon Bird with the extinguisher in hand and began arguing with him whether he was 25 feet away from his business. “Are you really going to spray him with a fire extinguisher?” says the woman recording the video.
“I’m going to put that cigarette out,” Jamison retorted, before adding: “You can’t smoke right here.” The two continued to argue until Bird pulled out a cigarette and lit it in front of Jamison.
The business owner then proceeded to pull the extinguisher up and point it towards Bird’s face. “Do it,” Bird replied. Jamison, without hesitation, sprayed the smoker right in the face, with the woman recording the video stating: “Call the cops.”
Officers arrived shortly thereafter, but Jamison had already fled the scene. A local news station, KSL-TV, caught up with Jamison to get his side of the story.
“Well I’ll say that I’m not proud of my behavior, I let myself get egged on and I overreacted,” he said. “I’m a protective small business owner who has asked hundreds of people not to smoke near our patio in the interest of our customers and our neighbors’ customers.”
Jamison claimed he had asked Bird numerous times throughout the day to “go to the designated smoking area but should not have reacted to feeling disrespected.” The Salt Lake City Police Department is actively investigating the incident.
Bird stated he has suffered from shortness of breath and headaches since the ordeal, the Daily Mail reported. “Who in their right mind puts a fire extinguisher a foot and a half away from someone’s face and just let’s go?”