‘Argumentative’ Florida man arrested and jailed for refusing to close non-essential business, deputies say

A Florida man who refused to shut down a non-essential business despite several warnings, and was argumentative with deputies, was arrested and taken to jail, the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office said Thursday.

Galen Trent Wood, 36, who owns Kitchen Table Games in Pinellas Park, violated the state’s “Safer-At-Home” order, the department said after investigating several tips.

The game store, which hosts games such as Dungeons & Dragons and Yu-Gi-Oh! in a strip mall, opened in 2014, according to its website.

Wood continued to keep the store open after Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis ordered non-essential businesses to shut down, according to several complaints that began April 3.

Deputies issued him warnings five times over a period of about two weeks but “would become argumentative with deputies, and refused to close,” the department said.

Wood was arrested Thursday evening and charged with operating a non-essential business and traveling to operate a non-essential business.

He was released early Friday on cash bond, jail records show. His bond had been set at $250 for each of the two charges.

The sheriff’s office initially described Wood as “combative” in a news release published on its website, but removed that word late Friday morning and simply described Wood as having been “argumentative” with deputies.