Minden Mayor, Police Chief to Enforce Curfew
Written by Daniel Davidson on April 3, 2020
In a joint video via Facebook Live, Minden Mayor Terry Gardner, Minden Police Chief Steve Cropper, Webster Sheriff Gary Sexton, and Webster Sheriff-Elect Jason Parker issued a statement to the public Friday morning, April 3, 2020.
The mayor began by giving statistics for the number of confirmed cases and deaths in Webster and surrounding parishes. At the last count, which was released at noon yesterday, Webster parish had 19 cases with 2 deaths, Bossier had 87 cases with 2 deaths, and Caddo had 336 cases with 10 deaths. He also mentioned that cases have been reported in both Claiborne and Bienville parishes. He then stated that all restaurants are to have curb-side or drive-thru service only and that no patrons are allowed to go into a restaurant. In addition, he reiterated that there is to be absolutely no dining on the premises, including outdoor dining.
“To help slow the virus in the City of Minden, I’m asking all businesses to close at 8 p.m.,” Gardner said. “We will start enforcing a curfew at 8:30 p.m.; this will be until April 30. I know this is not going to be a popular decision, but I’m trying to keep our community healthy and alive.”
Chief Steve Cropper then spoke. He stated the the governor has given power to local authorities to set and establish certain rules, such as curfews. Violating established rules and curfews can carry a $500 fine, six months in jail, or both. “If anyone is out past the curfew hours and you don’t have an essential reason to be out you will be cited or arrested,” Cropper said.
Sheriff Gary Sexton and Sheriff-Elect Jason Park both showed support for Chief Cropper and the decision to have a curfew. “This is a common sense thing,” Sexton said. “Let’s all work together on this.” A curfew for Webster Parish, outside of a city or town, has not been established.
Other cities around Northwest Louisiana are also establishing and enforcing stricter guidelines for eating establishments as well as curfews. Shreveport Mayor Adrian Perkins announced yesterday that no one would be allowed to enter a restaurant to pick up food and that patrons must remain in their cars at all times while picking up curbside or getting food at a drive-thru. Springhill Police Chief Will Lynd has also enacted a curfew. In Springhill, the curfew is from 10 p.m. until 5 a.m. for adults and 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. for juveniles under 17 years of age. Chief Lynd is also enforcing occupancy limits for stores and businesses in the city.