California sheriff says she won’t ‘make criminals’ by enforcing new Covid rules

Josh Marcus
·2 min read
Gavin Newsom announces California Covid curfew after coming under fire for restaurant trip (Getty Images)
Gavin Newsom announces California Covid curfew after coming under fire for restaurant trip (Getty Images)

A group of sheriffs say they won’t enforce governor California governor Gavin Newsom’s new slate of coronavirus measures, which includes an overnight curfew for high-risk counties.

One official, Fresno County sheriff Margaret Mims, said she refused to “make criminals out of normally law-abiding citizens".

“We are not going to make criminals out of normally law abiding citizens,” Ms Mims said on Thursday. “We’ve got a lot of things to do including taking guns away from gang members, stopping narcotic trafficking, and saving children from internet predators.”

She also cast doubt that night-time activities spread Covid, even though house parties and bars have been linked to outbreaks.

Cases are surging in California, with more than 10,000 new cases each day over the last week. Mr Newsom announced on Thursday a limited stay-at-home order, which includes an overnight curfew for Californians in high-risk areas. It’s estimated to apply to 94 per cent of the state’s nearly 40 million residents.

“The virus is spreading at a pace we haven’t seen since the start of this pandemic and the next several days and weeks will be critical to stop the surge. We are sounding the alarm,” he said, announcing the new restrictions. “It is crucial that we act to decrease transmission and slow hospitalizations before the death count surges. We’ve done it before and we must do it again.”

Other local sheriffs in Merced and King’s counties, plus Madera and Visalia, California say they also won’t directly enforce the curfew, according to KMPH, joining sheriffs in Northern California’s Sacramento and El Dorado counties who said the same.

Sheriffs around the county have refused to enforce coronavirus orders, including in Skamania, Washington, and Linn County, Oregon.

In Michigan, some officials belonging to the “constitutional sheriffs” movement have taken things one step further, asserting that they have the final word on interpreting the constitution in their counties, refusing to enforce coronavirus rules, and sometimes encouraging militia groups who violently protest them.

Read More

Gavin Newsom announces California Covid curfew after own party trip

California imposes strict curfew as Covid cases spiral

Los Angeles readies plan for curfew as virus cases spike