The Star Advisor has reported that 70 citations and 2 arrests have been made from Hawaiian citizens who refuse to follow the shelter-in-place directives issued by the governor. A third arrest was reported during this time, but it was not related to the shelter rules.
Violating the executive order is a misdemeanor that can be punished with a year in prison or a fine up to $5000.
Hawaiian Gov. David has managed each island differently and although he has not established checkpoints across the board, it has been considered on the islands have only one road that would be easy for law enforcement to monitor. The smaller islands do not have the facilities or personnel to withstand much of an increase of patients seeking care.
The first two arrests occurred in Waipahu and Kaneohe, two parks in the southwest section of Oahu. The third arrest reportedly was the result of a woman violating a protective order associated with a custody battle.
The Star Advisor reported further on the situation in Hawaii.
The Kauai Police Department planned to establish checkpoints around that island starting this morning to enforce the stay-at-home orders issued by Gov. David Ige and Kauai Mayor Derek Kawakami.
“It is urgent that our community respond to this pandemic and comply with these orders,” said Kauai Police Chief Todd Raybuck said in a written announcement of the Kauai checkpoints. “If this isn’t taken seriously, our small island’s healthcare system will not be able to withstand community spread of the virus. Please, stay at home and do your part for the wellbeing of our community.”
Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell says there are no immediate plans to run similar checkpoints on Oahu, and Hawaii island Police Chief Paul Ferreira also said checkpoints would not be practical on his island.
The Kauai checkpoints are designed to limit people’s movements to control the spread of the coronavirus, and Caldwell said each island has taken a different approach to enforcing the orders limiting the movements of residents based on the specific circumstances of each county.
“Kauai is a small island, there’s basically one road around the island, it’s easy to do checkpoints because of that,” Caldwell said. “Oahu has almost a million people, there are many different roads and we have a limited number of police officers who are out there every day making sure that laws are followed, and there are additional pressures on them now.”
“They are out there enforcing and warning people to comply, and what I hear from the chief is that they are complying, so to add this to their their responsibilities right now given the other challenges that they face is not something we’re considering,” Caldwell said of the checkpoints.
He added that “we’ll look at everything and anything to make sure that people are being safe, that they’re making good judgment on where they should be and when, and that they’re practicing social distancing. Everyone should be taking everything government is asking of them extremely seriously in order to really pound down the spread of this virus.
The arrest involving protective order was not directly related to the shelter-in-place order, but because the 43 year old female was violating an order to stay home unless considered an essential employee, the police added the second charge.