DENVER (CBS4) – The City of Denver was officially put under a stay at home order on Tuesday evening. A move Denver Mayor Michael Hancock announced 24 hours earlier.
“If you’re sick stay at home. If you’re not sick stay at home,” he said at a news conference Monday afternoon.
The order allows for only essential activities, which the city has laid out In detail.
A day after Denver’s news, Mayor of Aurora, Mike Coffman, announced via Twitter the Tri-County Health Department was preparing a similar stay at home order.
.@TCHDHealth preparing "stay-at-home" order similar, but not identical, to Denver. Difference will be that Denver's order expires on April 10 while TCHD order will go until April 17. Details of final order still being drafted. Expected to go into effect at 8 am on Thursday.
— AuroraMayorMike (@AuroraMayorMike) March 25, 2020
Coffman says the order which covers three counties, Adams, Arapahoe and Douglas, would go into effect Thursday morning. CBS4 asked 18th Judicial District Attorney George Brauchler if the mandates would be enforced.
“These public health orders have to be enforced otherwise they are just words spoken in the air or written down on paper they have no meaning,” he said.
How, he says, is the question on everyone’s mind.
“In the toolbox of enforcement there are a bunch of things available from conjoling to social pressure to county and city attorneys have to be ability to do certain things with zoning licensure. They can bring some real heat on businesses real quickly if they fail to comply with these orders,” Brauchler said.
Law enforcement issuing criminal citations is also an option, but one he says they would only want to use as a last resort.
“I think the circumstances where you might see law enforcement scratching out summons to criminal court is if something particularly egregious or repeat offenders, someone that is actually putting at risk the health and safety of others in the community,” Brauchler said.
He says what communities will likely see is public servants, including police officers, but not limited to, stepping in when there are large groups say throwing a party or congregating in the park.
CBS4 will follow any developments regarding the pending order in Arapahoe, Adams and Douglas Counties.