SAN JOSE (CBS SF) — San Jose police on Friday announced it will begin enforcing Santa Clara County’s health department order on sheltering at home and shutdown of non-essential businesses to stop the coronavirus spread.
At a press conference Friday morning, San Jose Police Chief Eddie Garcia said officers in specially-deployed health order compliance patrol cars have been going to businesses and groups of people to remind them of the health order; giving them a copy of the order and asking for their compliance.
“Our current plan is to move from an educational stance to an enforcement stance on any business that has been contacted, warned, and then reopens,” Garcia said.
Starting next week, Garcia said officers said non-compliant cases will face enforcement actions. Among the remedies, Garcia said businesses continuing to operate could face criminal citation, business license sanctions, and health code violations.
Garcia said health order compliance patrols found 56 violations since Thursday among a variety of businesses.
“There were two repair shops, three restaurants, two clothing stores, nine hair salons, six barber shops, eight smoke shops, two flower shops, three gyms, one sporting goods store, one video game store, one billiards hall, one gun store, one recycling center, one furniture store, one flea market and one car wash,” said Garcia.
The chief expressed some surprise and consternation over the fact that there were businesses ignoring the order.
“A billiards hall. Are you kidding me? I don’t know how a billiards hall thought that they could be open at this time,” said Garcia. “So as we go through this education, it’s going to turn into enforcement very soon.”
People on the streets performing essential duties would not be subject to citations, Garcia said. Citizens who want to report non-compliant businesses or situations in their neighborhood were urged to call 311 and not 911.