Police enforce Governor Larry Hogan’s COVID-19 guidelines
WICOMICO CO., Md. – Maryland has officially ramped up their COVID-19 compliance checks. This holiday weekend, Maryland state police will be working with the health department to enforce restrictions such as crowd sizes as well as bar and restaurant hours.
Lt. Chris Davala from MSP Salisbury Barrack says, “identifying and educating and enforcing if need be, any large gatherings or violation of said COVID orders from the governor.”
Governor Larry Hogan’s orders to Maryland State Police come in response to the recent up tick in the number of COVID-19 cases in the state. The first step to implement these guidelines was a robo-call to everyone with a cell phone, reminding people about the restrictions, to wear masks, and not to congregate in large groups.
“The contact tracing has shown that these large gatherings, these unrestricted large gatherings are becoming the crux of the pandemic, being basically mushrooming or blossoming to where we are today,” says Lt. Davala.
State Police tell us they’re more concerned with being present and visible, to help local jurisdictions in controlling the situation and lowering health risks.
Lt. Davala also says, “it affects everyone, no different than when we say drunk drivers, it affects everyone, a drunk driver strikes a family that’s in an intersection and there’s six people in a van, it doesn’t only affect that six people, it’s that mushroom, that spread, that ripple effect.”
Police say they are working closely with the health department, which has the authority to shut places down rules are not followed. However they will not be making door to door visits, but are simply there to follow up on complaints.
“The folks in the hospital behind the masks and the gowns taking care of these folks, by complying with the requests from the governor, you’re helping everyone stay safe,” says Lt. Davala.
Maryland state police tell 47 ABC they’re hoping COVID-19 cases start decreasing, so the state doesn’t have to tell them to take these kinds of measures during Christmas.
Police also say they are not looking to make arrests for not following guideline, but if a situation escalates to non-compliance and law breaking, steps will be taken accordingly.