Woman Who Refused to Wear Mask at Starbucks Wants Half of the $100K Raised for Barista She Shamed Online

Last month, over $100K was raised for Lenin Gutierrez, a Starbucks employee who was shamed online for refusing to serve a customer that was not wearing a mask

Lenin Gutierrez
Lenin Gutierrez. Photo: GoFundMe

The San Diego woman who berated a Starbucks barista online last month after she refused to wear a mask inside is now saying she deserves over half the $100,000 raised for the employee, according to local news outlet KGTV.

Lenin Gutierrez, a Starbucks barista, refused to serve Amber Lynn Gilles last month because Gilles did not have a face covering on, despite California law requiring people wear masks in public.

Gilles went on to shame Gutierrez on social media, posting a photo of him on Facebook and writing, "Meet lenen [sic] from Starbucks who refused to serve me cause I'm not wearing a mask. Next time I will wait for cops and bring a medical exemption."

In response, Gutierrez received an outpour of support, and a GoFundMe campaign acting as a virtual tip jar for the barista has gone on to raise over $100,000.

However, Gilles is now demanding that half that money belongs to her for “discrimination.”

"It was discrimination and everybody is OK with it and enabling and rewarding that behavior,” she told KGTV on Tuesday.

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"I get shortness of breath, dizziness and it messes with the heartbeat," she told the local news station. "And I do have asthma as well, and I do get mask-acne. So there’s several things going on and not only that but it doesn’t even work.”

KGTV reported that Gilles provided two documents to the outlet to prove her exemption. The first was a pelvic exam from 2015, with results that say "probable exophytic fibroid arising from the anterior wall of the uterus measuring 2.9 cm size,” and “simple 2.5 cm left ovarian cys."

The second document was a handwritten note on letterhead from a local chiropractor, who claimed that Gilles "has underlying breath conditions that prevent her from wearing a mask or any type of facial covering whatsoever."

The identity of Gilles' chiropractor was not shared.

Gilles defended using a note from a chiropractor for a breathing-related medical exemption, telling KGTV, "They are dedicated to providing non-invasive personalized care and treatment. They are real doctors.”

Gilles, who is reportedly looking to start her own GoFundMe to raise money for legal fees should she decide to sue, said that she has no remorse for the Starbucks incident.

“No absolutely not. I feel like I need the apology," she said. "I’ve been discriminated against, I’m the one who’s sick.”

Last week, Starbucks announced their official policy requiring masks for all customers in stores, which went into effect on Wednesday.

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