The Alton Police Department busted a party at an illegally open bar only to find the mayor's wife in attendance.
Alton, Illinois, Mayor Brant Walker wrote a lengthy apology statement to his constituents and berated his wife, Shannon, for her "stunning lack of judgment."
"My wife is an adult capable of making her own decisions, and in this instance, she exhibited a stunning lack of judgment," Walker wrote in a statement to the Telegraph.
Walker said he told Alton's police chief that his wife did not deserve any special treatment and should receive the same punishment as any other citizen who violated the state's stay-at-home order.
Shannon Walker will face a criminal complaint of reckless conduct, along with each person at the party for violating the stay-at-home order.
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In the early hours of April 5, local authorities busted a party at an illegally open bar in Alton, Illinois. Alton police were surprised to find the mayor's wife among the partygoers violating the state's stay-at-home order.
"Embarrassed" by her actions, Mayor Brant Walker issued a lengthy statement to berate his wife Shannon's "stunning lack of judgment."
"My wife is an adult capable of making her own decisions and in this instance she exhibited a stunning lack of judgment," Walker wrote in a statement to the Telegraph. "I am embarrassed by this incident and apologize to the citizens of Alton for any embarrassment this incident may cause our city."
Illinois' stay-at-home order prohibited all public and private gatherings occurring outside a single household or living unit to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
Brant had recently directed local authorities to ramp up their efforts to enforce the governor's stay-at-home order by issuing citations to residents after "increased reports of large gatherings," particularly in the city parks.
As a part of this effort, the Alton police broke up the illegal social gathering at Hiram's Tavern, about 1 a.m. on Sunday, which was reportedly still operating as normal on weekends in defiance of the coronavirus lockdown measures.
In his apology statement, Brant said he had instructed Alton Police Chief Jason Simmons to treat his wife as if she was any other citizen violating the stay-at-home order, "to ensure that she received no special treatment."
"She now faces the same consequences for her ill-advised decision as the other individuals who chose to violate the stay-at-home order during this incident," Brant wrote.
Shannon Walker and the other partygoers will each face a criminal complaint of reckless conduct in violating the order. Insider reached out the Alton Police Department to inquire if the complaint would prompt jail time or a fine but it declined to comment.
In his apology, the mayor emphasized that the US was in the midst of a national public-health crisis and he would continue to do everything in his power to ensure that everyone's health was protected.
"I have never been more optimistic about Alton's future, and by working together to flatten the curve of COVID-19, we will emerge from this public health crisis stronger and more vibrant than ever," he wrote.
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