Local and state officials warn social distancing violations could result in arrests

Posted at 6:22 PM, Mar 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-27 19:27:32-04

MILWAUKEE — After roughly two weeks of self-isolation, local and state officials are warning residents to either stay home or face potential arrests.

Common Council President Ashanti Hamilton put out a strongly worded warning to people around Milwaukee. He said, "It seems that it's possible that the Stay-at-Home order wasn't adequately laid out for some in the community, and we want to make sure the message is made loud and clear: Stay home and only go out for essential needs, or you could end up under arrest."

Ald. Cavalier Johnson supports the message but says he hopes it doesn't come to that.

"At the end of the day, we'd hope there wouldn't need to be any enforcement coming from our end," Johnson said. "We hope people heed the warnings and messages that have been coming from officials at the local and state level, and they stay home."

A majority of people appear to be abiding by the rules in place to keep six feet away from people in public and only go out when necessary. Those necessary trips include going to the supermarket, walking the dog, or even exercising. However, near Bradford Beach, two men were working out on the outdoor gym despite the warnings.

"I have concerns of being inside too long," Hernan Lopez of Waukesha said. "I got to get out. I got to do something. I can't keep myself inside the house for too long. As you can see, there are not a lot of people out here already. The social distancing thing is already working out."

Lopez says he is taking the warnings seriously and is washing his hands well. So was his new workout partner Adam Mitchell.

"Even when I'm here, I try to keep a distance from people," Mitchell said. "I even bring a bag of wipes in my pocket. Like you would at any gym, you wipe down the equipment."

Milwaukee Police will make an announcement on enforcement Monday.

Report a typo or error // Submit a news tip

Coronavirus in Wisconsin

More data on Wisconsin's vaccination progress here.

Find a vaccination site here.

Check out county-by-county coronavirus case numbers here.

More information: COVID-19 on the Wisconsin DHS website

Latest news and headlines here.