For Immediate Release
New Mexico State Police to enforce non-compliant penalties on Public Health during COVID-19 outbreak
Statewide-New Mexico State Police will enforce penalties on New Mexico Businesses and the public who refuse to comply with the Emergency Public Health Order.
On April 6th, 2020 New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham extended the Public Order to April 30th, 2020 which requires all non-essential businesses to stop operating. New Mexico State Police, in conjunction with local law enforcement, will ensure that businesses adhere to its directives.
New Mexico State Police has been educating non-compliant establishments and has given them a reasonable opportunity to adapt. We have seen many businesses and people voluntarily comply with the order. However, not all business and people are following the order. New Mexico State Police is in the position to hold businesses and people accountable. In the event businesses are not compliant, officers will first issue a written warning along with a cease and desist order. On a second violation the business will receive a citation under the Public Health Act (contrary to NMSA 24-1-1 a petty misdemeanor). A third or subsequent violation will be sent to the Department of Health where business will face a civil penalty of up to $5000.00.
The public health order also states that mass gatherings of more than five individuals are prohibited at this time.
If you wish to report non-compliance within a business, a violation of the mass gatherings ban, or other violations of the public order, you may report them to NMSP.COVID19@state.nm.us or contact our non-emergency COVID-19 hotline at 833-551-0518, Option 9 or contact your police or sheriff’s department on their non-emergency phone lines. When submitting a non-compliance complaint via email, please provide the following: date and time of observed violation, city, county, business name and business address.
“We have enormous sympathy and empathy for our small business community and everyone across the state who is dealing with this pandemic, but we must all understand that the sooner we strictly adhere to the Public Health Order, the sooner we’ll all get through this, and the better off our state will be as far as preventing illnesses and death,” said Chief Tim Johnson. “Citizens must understand that we are getting many complaints about non-compliance. It’s putting our officers, law enforcement all across the state and the public in jeopardy — and it risks increasing the already significant strain on our health care professionals.”
The New Mexico State Police is committed to ensure the health, welfare and safety of the citizens of New Mexico, and we are dedicated to doing just that by ensuring New Mexicans adhere to this public health emergency order.
Lieutenant Mark Soriano
New Mexico State Police
Public Information Officer
Public Relations Outreach – Unit