Two people were given fines after police broke up a large house party in Vernon late Thursday night.
The COVID-19-related fines came after the Vernon North Okanagan RCMP received a report of a large social gathering taking place at a residence in Vernon Nov. 19.
Police arrived at the house around 11:30 p.m., where they found “numerous people” inside as well as five to 10 people gathered on the balcony, according to media relations officer Const. Chris Terleski.
As the officers approached the house, the partygoers quickly disappeared inside and refused to answer the door for police.
“It’s disappointing to see people taking part in these high-risk activities, blatantly disregarding the direction of the Provincial Health Officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry,” Terleski said in a press release Friday. “We believe the community overwhelmingly understands and supports the necessary measures that have been implemented to slow the spread of COVID-19. We urge everyone to behave in a safe, responsible manner.”
Terleksi said the primary focus of the local RCMP during COVID-19 will continue to be education and awareness, but if people choose to disobey health authority mandates they could find themselves paying for their actions in the form of large fines.
Two people on scene each received a fine under the COVID-19 Related Measures Act. The incident remains under investigation at this time. Police did not disclose the amount of each fine.
The Vernon North Okanagan RCMP extended thanks to the community for their support and to the “vast majority who are adhering to the directives outlined by the Provincial Health Officer.”
Up-to-date information on the current COVID-19 related province-wide restrictions can be found by visiting www2.gov.bc.ca.