Frederick Police will be working with the county.
Frederick, Md (KM). Following citizen complaints about businesses not complying with the Governor’s orders regarding the coronavirus, the Frederick Police Department is working with the County Health Department, the Liquor Board and the Fire Marshal’s Office in COVID-19 compliance checks. “We are involved mainly for the safety of everyone else there,” says Acting Lieutenant Andrew Alcorn.
He says officers will accompany representatives of these three agencies as they visit local businesses. Police can use their training and experience in de-escalating tense situations. “If they go into an establishment and they have to confront someone whose not wearing a mask, or an unsafe business, then we have ability to step in and use our training, our verbal judo, our de-escalation techniques to improve the situation without it escalating further,” he says.
The Governor’s orders require people to wear a mask or face coverings in most public places; practice social distancing; and establishments, such ad restaurants and retail outlets, are to limit the number of people inside to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Alcorn says police officers took part in a compliance check last weekend. “The compliance checks that we did this weekend were 100% in compliance,” he says. “A couple little friendly reminders here and there about social distancing. But everybody was wearing masks and everybody was following the Governor’s executive order. So no enforcement action was needed.”
He says the goal is to get these establishments to voluntarily comply. “We are going to all of these establishments that we’re getting complaints about, or are possible locations where an issue could occur,” he said. “If we see a violation, we’ll remind them one last time, like a written warning, and then moving forward, we will take enforcement action.”
By Kevin McManus