Deputies arrested 182 people at two underground parties in Los Angeles on Saturday on suspicion of violating health orders aimed to slow the spread of the coronavirus, officials said Tuesday, Jan. 12.
The arrests are the latest by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s Super-Spreader Taskforce, which since last month has cracked down on organized, pre-planned parties with hundreds of people attending. The two parties on Saturday were at commercial buildings, one in the 600 block of W. 61st Street, the other in the 400 block of W. Pico Boulevard, Capt. Joe Mendoza said in an interview.
“They are being promoted by individuals in charge of these parties and bringing people together,” he said. “We’re not talking about a family backyard barbecue, we’re talking about an illicit party with hundreds of people who are there.”
On Saturday January 9, 2021 #LASD Super-Spreader Taskforce continued enforcement of the Los Angeles County health orders to address underground party events.
The results of the operation included 2 commercial building locations, and a total of 182 adult arrests (cited out). pic.twitter.com/kqvcw7TVTR
— LA County Sheriffs (@LASDHQ) January 12, 2021
Those arrested on Saturday were released at the scene and issued a citation for violating the county’s health order, Mendoza said. The citation is a misdemeanor and it’s up to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office to decide how to proceed in the courts.
In addition to the arrests, numerous others were advised to follow the health order, which includes wearing a mask and social distancing, Mendoza said.
“Sometimes when we arrive, we’re able to detain so many,” he said. “Sometimes it can be a task.”
In photos of the parties on Saturday, several deputies could be seen writing citations on tables and a billboard, as dozens were in a line awaiting release.
There were no other types of arrests on Saturday, Mendoza said. But the majority of other underground parties since the taskforce began have ended in recovering handguns, and one instance where a teen was rescued from human trafficking, Sheriff Alex Villanueva said in an earlier news conference.
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Source:: Los Angeles Daily News