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Hair Salons, Gyms, And Smoke Shops Among 60 L.A. Businesses Facing Charges For Staying Open

The 60 businesses facing criminal charges were first warned by police

Hair salons, gyms, a massage parlor and several smoke shops are among the 60 businesses facing misdemeanor charges for allegedly remaining open in violation of stay-at-home orders in Los Angeles, according to the city attorney’s office.

L.A. City Attorney Mike Feuer on Tuesday announced charges against dozens of businesses within the city and areas including Venice, Sherman Oaks, Tarzana, North Hollywood and Studio City.

He cited a grim warning given Tuesday by the nation’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, who said states and countries could “turn back the clock” by lifting restrictions too soon.

“As Dr. Fauci warned this morning, all our hard work to slow the spread of COVID-19 could be squandered if businesses violate the rules and open prematurely,” Feuer said in a news release.

The 60 businesses facing criminal charges were first warned by police and given explanations of the county health order requiring their closure, according to Rob Wilcox, a spokesman for the city attorney’s office. Wilcox indicated the Los Angeles Police Department then referred these businesses to the city attorney for charges, which carry a maximum penalty that includes a $1000 fine and six months in jail.

“As this is a matter of public health and safety, for those non-essential businesses blatantly violating the Order, strong enforcement was necessary,” Wilcox wrote in an email.

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