Tags: Coronavirus | coronavirus | covid | pennsylvania | tom wolf

Pennsylvania DAs: 'We Will Not Prosecute' Businesses That Break Gov.'s Order

By    |   Monday, 11 May 2020 07:58 PM

A growing number of district attorneys throughout Pennsylvania will not prosecute businesses for defying Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf's coronavirus restrictions.

“People are being smart, wearing masks, and maintaining social distance. Using criminal sanctions would not be helpful,” Dauphin County district attorney Fran Chardo said in a press release on Saturday, saying people would only be prosecuted in “extraordinary circumstances.”

“The criminal law is a blunt instrument and is not ordinarily used for enforcement of a Governor’s decree,” Chardo said.

On Friday, Dauphin County Board of Commissioners Chairman Jeff Haste laid out a plan to ignore Wolf's order, saying the governor should “return our state to the people (as prescribed by our Constitution) and not run it as a dictatorship.”

“For centuries, our people and businesses have shown they can adapt to changes to survive and prosper,” Haste said. “They cannot, however, do a thing when a dictator and an unelected secretary place them in lockdown.”

In support of the defiance, President Donald Trump tweeted: "The great people of Pennsylvania want their freedom now, and they are fully aware of what that entails."

Wolf responded to Trump's tweet during a press conference.

"I don't know how you stay safe and move quickly. We're trying to move deliberately. In Pennsylvania, I closed down the state, the Commonwealth closed down the state, in a measured, staged manner. We're reopening in the same measured, staged manner. I think that's aimed at keeping people as safe as we possibly can in these uncharted waters. I think that's the responsible thing to do," Wolf said.

Wolf also warned businesses that don't follow his restrictions risk having their licenses taken and funding withheld.

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A growing number of district attorneys throughout Pennsylvania will not prosecute businesses for defying Gov. Tom Wolf's coronavirus restrictions."People are being smart, wearing masks, and maintaining social distance. ...
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2020-58-11
Monday, 11 May 2020 07:58 PM
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