SLO County sheriff and DA against criminalizing people violating coronavirus orders

December 9, 2020

Sheriff Ian Parkinson

As scores of business owners refuse to abide by the state’s strict coronavirus rules, San Luis Obispo County Sheriff Ian Parkinson and District Attorney Dan Dow said that enforcing coronavirus lockdown orders is not their job.

Triggered by an increase in patients in intensive care units at hospitals in Southern California, Gov. Gavin Newsom’s stay-at-home order that went into effect Sunday evening. For the next three weeks, hair and nail salons, outdoor and indoor dining at restaurants, gyms and wineries are under orders to shut down.

Newsom’s order, which requires people to stay at home as much as possible, has led dozens of residents to turn in neighbors they suspect have violated the order.

However, sheriff deputies are not going to respond to calls for service based solely on complaints of non-compliance, nor will they stop people walking or driving to ask where they are going, Parkinson tweeted Tuesday. The department plans to focus on significant criminal matters while asking the business community for voluntary compliance of coronavirus restrictions.

“The Sheriff’s Office will not jeopardize the safety of this community and criminalize people who are trying to preserve their mental, physical, and financial health,” Parkinson tweeted.

From South County to Paso Robles, multiple restaurants are allowing customers to dine at their outdoor patios. In addition, several fitness centers are continuing to allow their clients to exercise inside, electing to violate the order and stay in business.

District Attorney Dan Dow

In response, San Luis Obispo City Attorney Christine Dietrich asked Dow to file misdemeanor charges against Kennedy Club Fitness. Dow declined, noting that if the city wants to “ensure compliance by Kennedy Club Fitness or any other business for violating coronavirus restrictions,” they can levy fines against the businesses.

“Families and businesses in our county are struggling to keep their head above water and survive financially,” Dow said. “There is no sense in labeling a business owner or a business as a criminal for choosing to keep their business open in a manner that adequately protects their customers – who, by the way, are not being forced to enter their business.”

The San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to petition the state to allow San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Ventura counties to separate from the Southern California region to form a Central Coast region, which would likely lead to relaxed rules.

In an attempt to show support for reopening, a group is planning a protest at Mission Plaza in SLO at 5 p.m. on Friday. Organizers, which include health care workers and business owners, are asking supporters to wear masks at the protest.


When is the State Legislature going to get involved. The Governor has been making decrees by hiding behind the emergency powers provisions for nine months and answering to no one. His usurping of our constituinional rights has got to stop. BTW spying on your neighbors is a tactic encouraged by most communist countries.


Just like the white house had the same 9 months and has only tweeted rubbish, but oh no it’s all Gavin fault!! Lol.


Really more of a mussolini than a mao.

George Dunn

Informing on one’s neighbors is required in most authoritarian regimes.

Jorge Estrada

It’s great that we have elected officials that can politely remind the Governor that California is not a Kingdom.


Just like the White House is not a kingdom, but at least California is trying if only the covidiots would do there part instead of crying oh mu rights as they stomp around like toddlers without masks when the adults in the room are doing public health damage control.

The GOP has blown the pandemic from the beginning, this is on everyone who voted for trump


California is sinking because of everyone who voted for gruesome.


What are you smoking? California’s not sinking (until the big one)and insults just make people look childish, just like the anti mask children embarrassing themselves.

Perhaps you mean the California people who move away and are helping Texas and Arizona turn blue?


I am smoking a lot better shit than you are. If you really think California is not going to hell in a hand basket, then you need to try some of mine.


Dan Dow for President! It’s pretty vindictive of our Governor to shut down SLO County using the ICU as criteria, when 94.3% of our ICU has open beds. With our numbers we should be in Tier 3 or 4, but notice they got rid of the Tier system, I guess too many people were figuring out they were screwing with us.


Right we should open everything up so the covidiots can drive here and be the typhoid Mary’s for 2020.

It’s better than the white houses plan that’s been running all year.


Not even close. To move from purple(tier 1) to red (tier 2), we need to be below 20 cases per day for a 14 day period.

We have not been below 20 since October.

Yesterday was 106.

The day before was 92





The facts are here:

“They” did not get rid of the tier system. The tier numbers can be seen here:


Oh boy, that will really trigger them! Panic and virtue signaling feeding frenzy to follow, here goes….


Ohhh mu rights! How dare someone tell me I have to think of the safety of others.

How dare they something something constitution…


“I fought the law and the law won.” Bobby Fuller Four (1966).


Down votes? For this??? Aye-caramba!

Jon Tatro

Thank you Dan and Ian, I appreciate leaders with common sense and compassion for the working class.


I thank both of them for their stance on this issue. I look at a recent suicide that was a result of this shutdown and a business owner passed from a heart attack that was due to the added stress of the financial and emotional toll on him and his family. How many more are out there that we don’t even have a clue of.

I work for a small business that had ten employees. In March it was cut to three. Two have been hired back an we are blessed to be employed. The young couple that runs the business have been tremendous through this and are an example of perseverance and character. This business is their lives and ours as employees. I and so very thankful to them, I know all us thank both of these men for their compassion on the families and business owners in the county.


There next election is just around the corner, Dan Dow only does what’s good for Dan Dow.


Can I start a protest to protest all the protests?


Yes, it’s a free country. You can even march in the street.


Great another COVID oblivious, spreading event, protest. Start issuing fines.


Dan Dow refuses to prosecute anyone for perjury, so officials and criminals can lie all they want and he won’t do anything.

Fines for no masks, that would hurt his next election, it’s not going to happen.