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After Multiple Complaints, Lewiston Police Say They'll Enforce Governor's Stay-At-Home Order

Maine Public/file
Lewiston Police Chief Brian O'Malley at a City Council meeting, June 19, 2018.

Lewiston’s police chief is urging residents to comply with Gov. Janet Mills’ stay-at-home order aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19. In a statement posted Thursday on the police department’s Facebook page, Chief Brian O’Malley says those who repeatedly ignore the order will face consequences.“Our initial response will be educational measures that includes warnings, and providing a copy of the Order,” O’Malley writes. “If individuals continue to violate the emergency order, they shall be issued a criminal summons or arrested.”

O'Malley says ignoring the governor's order risks further spread of the virus, which as of Thursday had infected 560 Mainers and resulted in 16 deaths.

O’Malley says the department has been flooded with calls from people complaining about violators of the stay-at-home order Mills issued March 31. The order allows essential activity, such as shopping for food and picking up prescriptions, and some exercise activities that allow for social distancing.

But O'Malley says people should not be playing basketball or gathering in groups. Lewiston has closed the basketball courts and skate park at Kennedy Park, and banned gatherings of more than 10 people.