New York Authorities Break Up Sex Party Amid Crackdown On Large Gatherings
Authorities in New York have been forced to shut down a number of alleged illegal gatherings, including what they describe as a sex party, in a bid to crack down on social distancing measures.
Regulations under the city’s Phase 4 plan have banned gatherings of more than 50 people, and say that everyone in attendance must adhere to social distancing and wear a face mask.
However, many photos and videos have emerged showing large groups of people flouting the rules, prompting authorities to revoke dozens of alcohol licenses and clamping down on regulations.
Now, the New York Sheriff’s Office has taken the lead on enforcing the social distancing regulations and is following up on tip offs from the public.
One of the tips even led officers to busting what they believed to be a sex party of around 30 people in Midtown Manhattan on Friday, July 31. Authorities confirmed that the person who is believed to have organised the event will appear in court soon.
Meanwhile, officers in Queens have also been forced to clamp down on regulations after crowds of people were spotted drinking and partying on Steinway Street.
Taking to Twitter, New York governor Andrew Cuomo shared a video of a charity concert in the Hamptons that appeared to be breaching the rules.
‘Videos from a concert held in Southampton on Saturday show egregious social distancing violations. I am appalled,’ he wrote on Tuesday, July 28. ‘We have no tolerance for the illegal and reckless endangerment of public health.’
Cuomo went on to say that 45 businesses, including 12 New York City bars have had their alcohol licences taken away from them as a result of ‘egregious violations’ of the coronavirus orders since June 18, when he vowed to come down on anyone breaking the regulations.
Meanwhile, the New York State Liquor Authority issued more than 130 coronavirus-related violations between July 24 and July 26, resulting in fines of up to $10,000.
New York Sheriff Joe Fucito told ABC News:
They were illegal activity before the COVID-19 pandemic, and violations of the mayor’s and governor’s orders in conjunction with the social event just compound the criminal activity.
Because of the fast-changing nature and location of the events, the Sheriff’s Office does not comment on criminal investigations, but we readily accept tips about these activities.
Richard Briffault, a professor of state and local government law at Columbia Law School, added:
These orders are pretty consistent with powers a governor or mayor has to take, steps to protect public health. There is no fundamental right to party
Organisers are believed to have been using WhatsApp to advertise the illegal events.
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