DENVER (CBS4) – The Bass Pro Shops at Northfield Stapleton was ordered to close Wednesday by Denver officials. The business violated Denver’s stay-at-home order, according to an order to vacate posted on the store window.
Officials issued a warning to the business on Tuesday. Denver’s Joint Information Center issued the following statement to CBS4 on Thursday:
“Sporting goods stores are not considered critical businesses under the Public Health Order at this time. Pursuant to the Order, businesses must be primarily engaged in providing critical products and/or services. While Bass Pro Shops sells firearms, which are considered critical under the Order, the business offers a multitude of other products and services that are not critical. Because of these circumstances, Denver advised Bass Pro Shops to close on Tuesday, April 7 to be compliant with the Order. On Wednesday, April 8, investigators discovered the store had reopened and therefore had to assist in its closure.
The City must enforce the Stay at Home Order to protect the public’s health and safety during the COVID-19 pandemic. Enforcement is a last resort as we trust the community recognizes the need to take the Order seriously if we are going to stop the spread of the virus. To date, we have issued only a handful of citations to non-essential businesses for failing to abide by the Order.”
A Bass Pro employee tells CBS4 the store was in the middle of processing several background checks for firearms. It’s unclear if the company plans to appeal the order to vacate.
Last week, the Appliance Factory located at 1045 Zuni Street was shut down by Denver officials for not complying with the city’s stay-at-home order. Officials cited the business four times for allowing in-store retail operations.
Appliance Factory’s CEO, Chuck Ewing, insists the store is an essential business. He provided the following statement to CBS4:
“We provide an essential service – you can’t get your appliances through the big box stores right now for weeks at a time, and Coloradans can’t be without their refrigerators, ranges and laundry products. We are the only Denver appliance company that can provide these critical products within one or two days. Appliance retailers are deemed an essential business by Homeland Security, and we look forward to working with Governor Polis and Mayor Hancock to ensure Coloradans have their household necessities.”
Residents who suspect that someone is violating the stay-at-home order should first contact their local public health agency to report any concerns. Residents may also file a report with the Colorado Attorney General’s Office by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org if local law enforcement or a local public health agency is unresponsive.
For more information about the public health order and how it is enforced, click here.