Buffalo Woman Pleads Guilty to Assault Charge for Pepper Spraying Medical Office Employee Over Face Mask Requirement

Modified: February 7, 2022 4:11pm

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Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn announces that 27-year-old Deshawna A. Taylor of Buffalo pleaded guilty before State Supreme Court Justice Paul B. Wojtaszek to one count of Assault in the Third Degree (Class “A” misdemeanor). The defendant pleaded guilty to the charge on Friday, February 4, 2022. 

On August 31, 2021, at approximately 4:00 p.m., the defendant entered a medical office on Main Street near Humboldt Parkway in the City of Buffalo. The defendant left the building after she was asked by an employee to comply with the face mask requirement. A few minutes later, the defendant entered the office again and reached underneath the glass partition while holding a can of pepper spray. The defendant, with the intent to cause injury to another person, pepper sprayed the employee. The victim received medical treatment for her injuries.

Taylor faces a maximum of one year in jail when she is sentenced on Tuesday, April 12, 2022 at 9:30 a.m. She remains released on her own recognizance.

A no-contact order of protection, issued on behalf of the victim that prohibits the defendant from being near the medical office, remains in effect.

DA Flynn commends the Buffalo Police Department for their work in the investigation.  

The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Peter M. Pinelli of the Felony Trials Bureau.