SoCal Sheriff Vows Not to Enforce Newsom’s ‘Faulty’ COVID Lockdown Order

With most of California heading into another lockdown Sunday night to slow the spread of COVID-19, one sheriff is vowing not to enforce the new restrictions ordered by Gov. Gavin Newsom.

In a video released Friday, Riverside County Sheriff Chad Bianco said, “These closures and stay-at-home orders are flat-out ridiculous. The metrics used for closures are unbelievably faulty and are not representative of true numbers and are disastrous for Riverside County.”

The county is part of the Southern California region, which also includes Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego, Imperial, Inyo, Mono, San Bernardino, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Ventura counties.

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After Newsom warned that a new stay-at-home order would be coming if the situation didn’t improve, the state officially announced this latest order for the San Joaquin Valley and Southern California regions on Saturday, after COVID-19 cases surged to record levels in recent weeks.

In his video, the Riverside County sheriff accused Newsom of trying to shift attention away from his “do as I say, not as I do attitude,” after the governor was photographed attending a Nov. 6 dinner party at a posh restaurant in Napa Valley, and apparently ignoring his own COVID-19 protocols.

“The dictatorial attitude toward California residents, while dining, luxury traveling, keeping his business open and sending his kids to in-person private schools is very telling about his attitude toward California residents, his feelings about the virus, and it is extremely hypocritical,” Bianco said.

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He added that the sheriff’s department expects residents to follow the new order, but his deputies won’t be enforcing it.

“The sheriff’s department is asking and expecting Riverside County residents to act responsibly and do what they can to protect themselves and their family from contracting the virus,” Bianco said, adding, “The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department will not be blackmailed, bullied or used as muscle against Riverside County residents in the enforcement of the governor’s orders.”

The new lockdown was ordered after capacity dropped below 15 percent at hospital intensive care units in the San Joaquin Valley and Southern California.

As of Saturday, the state listed the following capacity numbers: Bay Area: 21.7 percent; Greater Sacramento Region: 21.4 percent; Northern California: 24.1 percent; San Joaquin Valley: 8.6 percent; Southern California: 12.5 percent.

The stay-at-home order goes into effect on Sunday, Dec. 6 at 11:59 p.m.

Under the order, gatherings of people from different households are banned for three weeks. Shopping malls can remain open at 20 percent capacity and movie shoots will continue.

The following businesses and facilities must close:
-Indoor and outdoor playgrounds
-Indoor recreational facilities
-Hair salons and barbershops
-Personal care services
-Museums, zoos, and aquariums
-Movie theaters
-Bars, breweries and distilleries
-Family entertainment centers
-Live audience sports
-Amusement parks.

Watch the sheriff’s comments above.