Arkansas sheriff says he won’t enforce governor’s order to wear masks

The sheriff with the Polk County Sheriff’s Office in Arkansas is not a fan of Gov. Hutchinson’s new mask mandate.

a person wearing a mask© Provided by WANT Memphis

In a Facebook post Thursday night, Sheriff Scott Sawyer said, “…the Polk County Sheriff’s Office will not be writing tickets to our citizens or visitors to our community for not wearing a mask.”

Here is Sawyer’s entire post:

“I have received numerous calls, texts, and messages from concerned citizens asking questions about the Public Health Directive mandating us to wear masks.

I have not had an opportunity to read the mandate so I could not answer many of the questions. I will sit down tonight and read it.

What I can assure you is that the Polk County Sheriff’s Office will not be writing tickets to our citizens or visitors to our community for not wearing a mask. I have neither the time, the personnel, or (in my opinion) the right to write tickets to anyone for not wearing a mask.

I value our individual freedoms and will fight to protect our rights. I have worn a mask in stores and public indoor gatherings for the last three months. This is a choice I made for myself and my family. I can not and will not  make that choice for you.

I can not speak for all our Arkansas Sheriffs but all of the ones that I have spoken to this afternoon are in agreement on this issue.

I will post more on this after I have time to read the mandate.

Until then.. Stay safe and Stay Healthy.”

By Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s order Thursday, people in Arkansas must wear masks in public places starting July 20.

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Order

After weeks of resisting, Gov. Asa Hutchinson yesterday issued a statewide mask order, citing the rising number of COVID-19 cases and advice from the state’s doctors and nurses. “This is the best opportunity we have to get life back to normal,” he said. The order says Arkansans should wear face coverings in indoor and outdoor places where they are exposed to non-household members and social distancing can’t be assured. Police can enforce the directive and issue fines. ‘King Asa’: At least one legislator isn’t happy with the governor’s use of power. Republican state Rep. Laurie Rushing said on Twitter that the governor made the Legislature “look like idiots. A little communication with the other two branches of government should have been considered.” Sheriff Won’t Enforce It: Polk County Sheriff Scott Sawyer hasn’t read the mandate, but says his office won’t write tickets for people not wearing masks: “I have neither the time, the personnel, or (in my opinion) the right to write tickets to anyone for not wearing a mask.” (Arkansas Business)

 

https://www.arkansasbusiness.com/article/132146/hutchinson-says-hell-defer-to-local-police-on-mask-order?utm_source=enews_071720&utm_medium=email&utm_content=late-news-update&utm_campaign=newsletter&enews_zone=3824

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