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Hurricane man accused of breaking quarantine

Photo: Hurricane City Police Department

UPDATE: The Hurricane Police Department says that the individual that was spoken about at Thursday’s city council meeting has not tested positive for COVID-19 but has been in close contact with someone who has. The story below has been updated with this information.

HURRICANE, Utah — A Hurricane man who had been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 may face criminal misdemeanor charges after authorities say he disobeyed a quarantine order.

Hurricane City Police Chief Lynn Excell announced Thursday during a city council meeting that an unnamed man who tested positive for the virus broke quarantine and was spotted in the community.

Breaking quarantine in Hurricane

“Within probably the last three hours, they were right here in front of our building at the rental equipment store,” Excell said.

Gov. Gary Herbert issued an executive order on Wednesday making it a criminal offense for someone under quarantine to go outside their home.

Excell said anybody directed by the Southwest Public Health Department to stay in quarantine would face similar charges.

In a release made on Friday, the department says that they have been in contact with the man in question and have explained to him the importance of following the guidelines.

“The conversation between Chief Excell and this subject was positive and the subject stated he will comply with these protective measures.

Misdemeanor charges for violators

He says charges would include a class B misdemeanor for the first violation and a class A misdemeanor after that.

During the city council meeting, council member Joseph Prete asked Excell if that enforcement would also include returning missionaries from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

“Yeah, it would,” Excell said, as reported by the St. George News.

“If the state health department has ordered them to be home, and they’re out walking in the community – yes, they could be criminally charged as well.”

How To Prevent the Spread of COVID-19 Coronavirus

COVID-19 coronavirus is transmitted from person to person. It is a virus that is similar to the common cold and the flu. So, to prevent it from spreading:

  • Wash hands frequently and thoroughly, with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds.
  • Don’t touch your face.
  • Keep children and those with compromised immune systems away from someone who is coughing or sneezing (in this instance, at least six feet)
  • If there is an outbreak near you, practice social distancing (stay at home, instead of going to the movies, sports events, or other activities.)
  • Get a flu shot.

Local resources

State of Utah:

Utah State Board of Education

Utah Hospital Association

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Utah Coronavirus Information Line – 1-800-456-7707

National Resources

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Commonly asked questions, World Health Organization

Cases in the United States