A U.S. military veteran and gym owner in New York ripped up a $15,000 lockdown fine from the Erie County Health Department during a live Fox News appearance on Tuesday.
Robby Dinero, owner of Orchard Park’s Athletes Unleashed gym, was hit with the massive fine following a confrontation with a health department official and Erie County sheriffs on Friday for holding an after-hours protest in his closed gym with other business owners. The confrontation, reported by The Daily Wire, ended with the government officials being ushered off the gym owner’s property.
Speaking with Fox News’ Sandra Smith, Dinero argued that the lockdown edicts go too far, denying Americans the freedom to earn a living. Simultaneously, the veteran underscored, NY Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Erie County Executive Mark C. Poloncarz are bringing in $225,000 and $103,000 salaries, respectively, via taxpayers.
Dinero challenged the New York officials to look their constituents’ children in the eyes and tell them their parents’ work is not “essential.”
Before signing off with Smith, the businessman took the $15,000 fine and ripped it up, as supporters gathered behind him chanted “We will not comply” and waved American flags.
Erie County Comptroller Stefan Mychajliw posted a link to a GoFundMe account for Dinero to Twitter on Tuesday.
“Poloncarz’s Health Dept fined Marine, war veteran & business owner Robby Dinero $15,000,” he wrote. “Kicked them out of his gym. Video went viral. Sparked the resistance against tyrannical politicians. Please share our GoFundMe. Help him fight against this $15K fine.”
The GoFundMe reads as follows:
Local business owner, Marine and war veteran Robby Dinero started the resistance against the government and police arbitrarily shutting down businesses because of COVID. Video of this proud patriot kicking out health inspectors from his gym went viral. Power hungry politicians punched back, fining this veteran and small business owner $15,000 for defiantly standing up to tyrannical COVID shut downs that are more about power and control than your health. We can help Robby fight back. An attack on one is an attack on all. Let’s raise enough to cover the cost of his ridiculous fine orchestrated by an over-zealous Health Department controlled by Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz.
As noted by The Daily Wire, Dinero and other business owners refused to comply when a health department official and the Erie County Sheriff’s Department entered their facility on Friday. The business owners, who taped the interaction, told the health dept. official and the sheriffs to “go get a warrant” and leave their “private property.” To cheers from the business owners, the authorities complied, leaving the gym and the front of the business, video shows.
“Tim Walton attended the meeting that began at around 7pm Friday and tells WBEN there were more than 100 people attending the meeting inside the gym,” WBEN reported. “In a press release and blog post, Walton says the Erie County Sheriff’s Department and Health Department entered the facility and confronted the gathering, telling them they were in violation of the limit to mass gatherings of no more than ten.”