ST.PETERSBURG, Fla. (WFLA) – If you plan on enjoying the weekend outside in Pinellas County, deputies and police have a strict warning. You must be in a group 10 or smaller and practice social distancing to comply with COVID-19 orders. Anyone not following guidelines could be arrested.
“They can either get a fine or go to jail. We’re trying to avoid both of those things,” said St. Petersburg Police Chief Anthony Holloway. “So when an officer tells you that you need to move or separate if you’re not a family, separate. Not only for yourself and your family but for the community.”
At first, deputies or police will have a conversation with you. If you don’t comply you could get a warning. If you continue to disregard the law, you could be charged with a second-degree misdemeanor, which could land you a $500 fine & 60 days in jail.
“Really we hope we don’t have to do that,” said Chief Halloway. “You don’t need law enforcement to make sure you’re staying healthy. You should want to do that. Don’t worry about the law, you should be worry about taking care of your family and of yourself. This social distancing is all about you and your family members.”
The Pinellas County Sherrif’s Office also spoke out about the issue on Friday as the rules apply through all cities within Pinellas County.
“It’s important for everyone to understand, we have not hit the bottom of this,” said Sheriff Bob Gualtieri. “We have not seen the worst of it. Unfortunately, the worst is yet to come.”
Local law enforcement said their goal is to make sure everyone adheres to CDC guidelines to keep our community safe and healthy.
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