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Articles Tagged with COVID-19

In June, Governor Gavin Newsom issued an executive order that requires all people who are outside of their homes to have a mask on. People in California have been mandated to have a mask on at all times if they are not at home, and that includes wearing one while walking about outside. Supporting Gov. Newsom’s order is Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, who has also ordered those in L.A. to be wearing a mask outside their private homes. However, despite these orders, one Los Angeles Councilman says there are too many people in his district who are not adhering to the requirements and are not wearing masks.

 

Councilman Paul Koretz who represents Bel Air, Westwood, Culver City, Encino, Palms, and South Robertson, says that he sees far too many people walking around his district directly disobeying the mandate. Koretz suggested that there be punishments for those who are not wearing their masks by considering refusal to wear one to be reckless endangerment. Now an L.A. City Council committee is exploring ways to motivate residents to wear masks to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. Recommendations include forms of enforcement including the issuing of citations in addition to a public education campaign explaining the need for masks.

 

Imperial County in California has been negatively impacted by the virus the most in recent weeks. This county, outside of San Diego, is nearing 23% for their test positivity rate over a two-week period. More testing and increased numbers in hospitalization rates from the virus are causing great unease across the state.

 

Gov. Newsom announced that he is leaving the COVID-preventative restrictions to be decided by officials in their respective counties. However, if these counties are unable to figure out an effective way of getting their residents to wear masks, Newsom said he would intervene. Newsome urged officials in Imperial County to re-issue the stay-at-home order and shut back down. 

 

How Does the Los Angeles Police Department Feel About Mask Enforcement Measures?

 

Newsom warned the state that those counties that will not comply with widespread maks-wearing will risk losing some of the $2.5 billion COVID-19 funding. The LAPD has tried to stay on the sidelines thus far, hoping that the public would overwhelmingly decide to wear their masks on their own. Police officials would prefer not to have to issue citations and fines to individuals without masks. There were cases reported of incidents in which people were charged with trespassing when they would not use their masks inside a private business. 

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Three people ignoring California’s stay-at-home order and violating the beach closures were arrested. According to Lt., Amber Baggs of the San Diego Country Sheriff’s Department, the three individuals were participating in a rally held at Moonlight Beach. 

When authorities encountered people walking along the beach they told them about the county public health order. While the deputies were explaining the situation, the individuals who were violating the order just sat down. The deputies provided the protestors with multiple opportunities to comply but they refused and as a result, were put under arrest.

Others in the group of protestors broke apart and headed toward Swami’s Beach Park where they eventually left the area and were not subject to legal action by the authorities. The protest was organized by Crista Anne Curtis, and she called the event “The Surf’s Up Shred the Tidal Wave of Tyranny” protest. This was the second event that Curtis organized. 

In addition to this beach protest, there was another one planned at the Pacific Beach lifeguard station by a different activist. Naomi Soria, who had previously organized a similar march in downtown San Diego, used social media to get the word out about the event. She called her planned beach protest “A Day of Liberty San Diego Freedom Rally.”

Effective March 19, Governor Gavin Newsom’s Executive Order N-33-20 declared a state of emergency in California and directed all Californians to stay at home. Soria is looking at charges brought forth by the San Diego Police Department to the city attorney’s office for violating Code 8665.

What is Code 8665?

Code 8665 states that if an individual willfully disobeys any provisions or lawful orders and regulations by the state they will be guilty of a misdemeanor. If convicted of the misdemeanor charges, they will be fined up to $1,000, or they may be sent to prison for up to six months. In some situations, they can face both the fine and imprisonment.

The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution guarantees all Americans freedom of religion, speech, freedom of the press, the right to assembly, and the right to petition the government. The public health order infringes on the right to assembly, but there are many legal minds that believe the courts would side with the public health order. The government has vast, and expansive powers during a public health crisis.

While others say there is a significant difference between requiring an infected person to be quarantined versus wide-spread demands that healthy, low-risk individuals also essentially be quarantined. Mass lockdowns encroaches on American’s most fundamental rights as well as the freedom to move and travel. 

Have You Been Charged With a Misdemeanor in San Diego?

Since all of California is still under the stay-at-home order, it is becoming more and more common for residents of the state to want their freedoms back. Incidents were stepping out to enjoy the beach or to congregate in large groups is being monitored by the authorities and threats of arrest or actual detentions are on the rise. If you have been arrested for violation of Code 8665, contact the Law Offices of David M. Boertje immediately. Continue reading

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