Coronavirus live updates: Here’s what to know in South Florida on July 8

Michelle Marchante, Howard Cohen
·7 min read

We’re keeping track of the latest news regarding the coronavirus in South Florida and around the state. Check back for updates throughout the day.

Criminal charges brought against Bradenton family that sold toxic bleach as COVID-19 cure

The FDA’s Office of Criminal Investigations was on the scene where a Bradenton family who marketed a toxic bleaching agent as cure for COVID-19 and other serious diseases and conditions now faces federal criminal charges. They were seen removing large drums of some chemical from the home.
The FDA’s Office of Criminal Investigations was on the scene where a Bradenton family who marketed a toxic bleaching agent as cure for COVID-19 and other serious diseases and conditions now faces federal criminal charges. They were seen removing large drums of some chemical from the home.

3:30 p.m.: Members of a Bradenton family who marketed a toxic bleaching agent as cure for COVID-19 and other serious diseases and conditions now face federal criminal charges.

Mark Grennon, 62, and sons Jonathan, 34, Jordan, 26, and Joseph Grenon, 32, marketed the substance under the name “Miracle Mineral Solution” through a quasi-religious organization known as the Genesis II Church of Health and Healing, reported The Bradenton Herald.

The Grennons are charged with conspiracy to defraud the United States and conspiracy to violate the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, as well as criminal contempt of court related to a civil case filed by the federal government earlier this year.

Read the full story here.

Drive-Through Theatre Experience postponed in Miami

1:40 p.m.: The Miami-Dade County Public Auditorium’s Drive-Through Theatre Experience featuring José Negroni that was scheduled for Saturday night has been postponed due to new regulations tied to the county’s surging coronavirus cases and deaths.

The auditorium announced on its website that the show featuring the pianist was off because of the 10 p.m. curfew Mayor Carlos Gimenez ordered in Miami-Dade.

These free, 15-minute concerts were designed to be experienced inside your cars. Once at the venue on Flagler Street patrons could tune into a designated FM station while in the parking lot to hear the performance.

A new date has not been announced.

New food distribution in Miami

12:45 p.m.: DeliverLean and Farm Share have partnered to provide produce boxes to Alonzo Mourning’s Overtown Youth Center three days a week.

The program began Wednesday and 300 boxes of food will be handed out at 8 a.m. Monday, Wednesday and Fridays at Gibson Park, 401 NW 12th St., Miami. The boxes will include fresh fruits and vegetables, milk, cheese and/or a protein.

You can walk up or drive up. Food distribution will be first come, first served and last until the 300 boxes are out.

Miami-Dade Public Schools extends deadline to enroll

11:40 a.m.: Miami-Dade County Public Schools’ Superintendent Alberto Carvalho announced on Wednesday that the deadline for parents or guardians to declare their intentions for their children’s participation in 2020-21 school year once the county is in Phase 2 has been extended to July 15.

The original deadline was Friday.

You can submit your preference — in-school attendance or online learning — online at

Parents can also mail in their preferences or drop them off at a school site.

Despite state order, Miami-Dade will not reopen schools until county enters Phase 2

Florida hit with 9,989 new coronavirus cases as the death toll nears 4,000

Coronavirus testing continues at Marlins Park on Friday, June 26, 2020.
Coronavirus testing continues at Marlins Park on Friday, June 26, 2020.

11:25 a.m.: Florida’s Department of Health on Wednesday confirmed 9,989 additional cases of COVID-19, the fourth highest single-day total recorded since the pandemic began in March. The state now has 223,783 confirmed cases.

Florida’s highest single-day total was recorded Saturday with 11,458 cases.

There were also 48 new deaths announced, raising the statewide death toll to 3,889.

Read the full story here.

In Miami-Dade, the challenge of rolling back an economy twice to fight new COVID spike

10:30 a.m.: Mayor Carlos Gimenez’s office issued a statement Monday announcing sweeping closures of restaurants and gyms coming within 48 hours to reverse weeks of rising COVID cases and hospitalizations. Then Gimenez spent Monday night and much of Tuesday watering down that plan as business owners begged for relief.

After threatening legal action, gym owners beat back a planned closure in exchange for agreeing to lose current mask exemptions for strenuous indoor exercise. Restaurant owners still must close dining rooms, but Gimenez agreed to spare outdoor seating.

And his office announced another change Tuesday, when a spokeswoman said the promised Gimenez order was delayed a day and would take effect Thursday.

The series of changes, dropped in press releases, television interviews and Twitter posts, captured the new challenges Gimenez faces as he tries to pull back on a May reopening plan that hasn’t prevented record levels of COVID spread.

Read the full story here.

COVID-19: As Miami shuts down, American Airlines resumes Caribbean travel from MIA

10:25 a.m.: Outside the doors of Miami International Airport, life is shutting down as restaurants in Miami-Dade County prepare to close their indoor dining rooms — once again — in the face of spiking COVID-19 infections.

But inside the airport, things are beginning to look closer to normal. On Tuesday, anxious travelers, wearing masks and face shields, checked themselves in at kiosks, waited in long security lines and rushed to make flights, as American Airlines relaunched service to eight previously suspended Caribbean destinations.

“Today is a moment of great satisfaction for me to be able to return home,” said lawyer Maxson Orlélus, 44, who was flying back to Port-au-Prince, Haiti, after being stranded in the United States since March when his return flight was canceled after Haiti closed its airports and land borders.

Read the full story here.

‘They’re the ones who have the information.’ Miami-Dade waits on Florida for contact tracing

10:15 a.m.: As the number of new COVID-19 cases surges statewide and in Miami-Dade, local officials have struggled to identify the precise places where the disease has been spreading — key information that public health officials need to help contain outbreaks of the disease.

But two months into Miami-Dade’s efforts to safely reopen businesses and other public spaces, county officials and the Florida Department of Health are still working out the details of how many workers will be needed to carry out the labor-intensive and time-consuming task of contact tracing — identifying those who have come into contact with someone who recently tested positive for COVID-19.

Read the full story here.

Can I give my dog or cat COVID-19? The CDC has tips on keeping your pets safe

9:45 a.m.: As people spend more time indoors with other family members, the concern about passing the coronavirus to a loved one is one of our daily stressors. As cases soar in Florida, and Miami-Dade is closing restaurants to in-person dining except for outdoor seating, more people are expected to stay at home, increasing the risk of transmitting the virus.

And what if one of your loved ones is a dog or a cat?

Can we give our pets COVID-19?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the answer is yes.

Read the full story here.

‘They treat us like we bring no value to the country’: ICE order leaves foreign students helpless

9:25 a.m.: A new federal immigration directive that threatens the deportation of international college students who take all of their classes online this fall left Florida college administrators scrambling and students panicking about their futures.

The directive issued Monday by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement says all students with F-1 or M-1 student visas in the U.S. must go back to their home countries if their courses are entirely online in the fall, a measure many colleges and universities are adopting due to the spread of the coronavirus.

The measure is expected to impact at least 1 million students nationwide and more than 10,000 students in the South Florida region, according to ICE officials, local university statistics and College Factual, a New York-based company that gathers college data from the Department of Education.

Read the full story here.


9:20 a.m.: Here are the coronavirus headlines to catch you up on what’s happening around South Florida and the state as Wednesday begins.

Florida sees more than 7,000 new coronavirus cases as Miami-Dade total hits 51,000

Miami-Dade mayor reverses course, will allow gyms to stay open as COVID-19 cases rise

Florida still not reporting how many hospitalized with COVID. DeSantis won’t say why.

What counties are rolling back reopening? Here are the rules in Miami-Dade, Broward and Monroe

The dying man was sent back to his cell. A look at how COVID-19 kills Florida prisoners