Man arrested after allegedly lashing out at Austin cafe worker offering him a mask


AUSTIN (KXAN) — A man is charged with making terroristic threats, after he was accused of lashing out at a cafe worker who was trying to give him a face mask.

According to a Travis County affidavit, around 4:47 p.m. Friday Austin police responded to a disturbance at a downtown cafe on East 6th Street.

An employee told officers a man, later identified as 50-year-old Howie Brown of Florida, came in without a mask and walked to the ATM inside the cafe, the affidavit says.

Since the cafe has a mask policy, the employee said she grabbed an extra mask to offer Brown, the affidavit says. But he walked toward her and said, “[Expletive], I’ll kill you,” with clenched fists.

“[The employee] was in fear for her safety and believed Brown was about to assault her,” the affidavit says.

After more security arrived, Brown allegedly left the building and was found on public bench a block away, according to the affidavit.

He was reportedly agitated, wouldn’t answer officers’ questions and allegedly gave them a false name. Brown reportedly made statements like “I’m going to kill your [expletive],” and addressed officers by their names while he was being detained, the affidavit says.

As the employee walked over to issue a Criminal Trespass Notice to Brown, he allegedly continued to make comments to her including, “Watch your back [expletive]. Next time I’m in that store, I’ll kill your [expletive],” according to the affidavit.

Officers arrested Brown and he was taken to the Travis County Sheriff’s Office for booking, where they were able to positively identify him after he reportedly gave another false name.

Brown is charged with retaliation, failure to identify and making terroristic threats.

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