Rodman Questioned by Cops at Florida Airport for Refusing to Wear Mask on Plane

Rodman Questioned by Cops at Florida Airport for Refusing to Wear Mask on Plane dennis rodman speaks to crowd while seated onstage Basketball star Dennis Rodman (R) addresses the crowd at the 2018 Politicon in Los Angeles, California, on Oct. 20, 2018. (MARK RALSTON/AFP via Getty Images)

By Fran Beyer | Tuesday, 21 December 2021 01:11 PM

Former Chicago Bulls basketball great Dennis Rodman was confronted by police for refusing to wear his face mask properly aboard an airplane after being asked to do so several times.

The 60-year-old was in first class on a JetBlue flight from Los Angeles to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, when staff asked him to pull up his mask, which was sitting below his chin, TMZ first reported.

Rodman initially obliged with the federal mandate requiring mask wearing aboard planes, but then pulled it down, saying he was having trouble breathing, the news outlet reported.

Somone on the plane told the celebrity news outlet that Rodman was asked four different times to keep his face covering over his mouth and nose, that he constantly lowered it to his chin, and wouldn't immediately put it back on when asked.

"Mr. Rodman was wearing a mask but would temporarily pull it down at different times while the plane was in flight," a spokesperson for the Broward County Sheriff’s Office told the Miami Herald.

"The staff stated that they would ask him to pull it back up and he would, but then would pull it down again throughout the trip stating he had trouble breathing."

"Mr. Rodman cooperated with deputies and exited the airport grounds on his own with no issues," the spokesperson added.

With the surge in omicron variant coronavirus infections in the United States, authorities are urging travelers to wear masks and maintain social distancing at indoor public spaces.

"I would advise wearing high-quality masks during travel and staying away from people as much as possible within the airports," epidemiology professor Tara Smith at Kent State University told Vox.

"I would advise testing before travel to make sure you’re not exposing others. Ideally, this would include a PCR test shortly before the flight, but realistically, these are getting harder to do because of a delay in turn-around times for testing. Rapid tests would be another alternative."