Chinese-Owned Hospital System in Australia Lays Off 800 Staff Amid Virus Crisis

Health minister blasts “astonishing breach of faith”

By Dan Lyman – 4/2/2020

An Australian private hospital system owned by a Chinese investor has laid off 800 staffers and might close altogether in the middle of the coronavirus crisis, according to reports.

Healthe Care was purchased by Chinese billionaire Liu Dian Bo in 2015 and now serves as Australia’s third-largest private hospital operator in Australia with 34 clinics nationwide.

After the federal government suspended all elective surgeries to focus treatment for coronavirus patients, Healthe Care began laying off employees and is now “putting in doubt 8000 beds” if state financial aid is not delivered, 9News reports.

“We have received no firm proposals,” the company said in a letter to staff.

“Regrettably, this has driven us to these immediate actions.”

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State and federal governments are “locked in crisis talks to keep doors open” at Healthe Care and other private hospitals as the coronavirus crisis grows in scope.

“The important thing is that we keep beds open, particularly ICU beds,” said Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack.

Health Minister Greg Hunt blasted the firing of nurses as an “astonishing breach of faith.”

China’s direct impact on the health and security of Australian citizens has been highlighted repeatedly during the coronavirus outbreak.

Massive supplies of critical medical gear have been hoarded by major Chinese companies in Australia and other countries and flown to China during the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak, as Infowars reported days ago.

https://www.newswars.com/

2.5 Million Guns Sold In March, SMASHING Previous US Record For Gun Buys

Americans want their guns.

By Richard Moorhead – Apr 2, 2020

Federal firearms licensees sold more than 2.5 million guns to the American public in March 2020, easily smashing the previously held record for the most gun sales in an individual month by more than a million transactions.

The gun sale data has been gauged by Small Arms Analytics, and the estimation of a total of 2,583,238 sales has been pulled from raw FBI National Instant Criminal Background Checks System data. It’s actually possible that the total figure of guns sales is a bit higher, considering gun sales between private individuals are not subject to the NICS system.

Not only does the figure of 2.5 million gun sales surpass the previous monthly record holder from March 2019, but it does so in a resounding fashion. 1.4 million guns were sold in that month, meaning that March 2020 surpassed the record by approximately 1.1 million sales.

A breakdown of the sales between long guns and handguns was provided by Small Arms Analytics. Handgun sales in particular spiked exponentially, easily surpassing previous quarterly highs in gun sales that preceded major American elections.

An alternate system of quantifying gun purchases utilized by the National Shooting Sports Foundation verified that March was in fact a record-setting month for gun sales.

The surge in gun and ammunition sales in the wake of the nascent Chinese coronavirus epidemic is well documented at this point, with gun and ammunition retailers reporting selling out their entire inventories and still not coming close to meeting demand.

As Americans arm themselves in unprecedented record-setting numbers, some major American municipalities and states have taken it upon themselves to wholly shut down the lawful firearms commerce and manufacturing industries. However, several of them have been stopped cold in their tracks, in light of federal guidelines from the Trump administration that recognizes businesses serving the Second Amendment community as “essential.”

New Jersey and Los Angeles County are among the two biggest governmental entities forced to walk back arbitrary commands that gun stores close in light of the guidelines.

Dubious state of emergency declarations that try to implement backdoor gun control in a hour where more Americans are seeking to lawfully arm themselves than ever before simply aren’t going to work, judging from historical amounts of armaments freedom-loving patriots have secured in the last month alone.

Leaked Draft Letter Reveals Michigan Hospital’s Policy to Ration Ventilators for Coronavirus Patients

People are tested for coronavirus at the Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services (ACCESS) center in Dearborn, Michigan on March 26, 2020. - The US was quickly becoming a new epicenter of the global coronavirus pandemic Thursday as new infections soared and unemployment claims skyrocketed to a historic …

By Rebecca Mansour – 27 Mar 2020

A draft letter by one of southeast Michigan’s major hospital systems was leaked online Thursday revealing the hospital’s policy to prioritize care for “patients who have the best chance of getting better” in the event of a shortage due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The letter was drafted by officials at the Henry Ford Health System and is addressed to “our patients, families and community.” It outlines the criteria for which patients will be eligible for care if the hospital reaches capacity and is forced to ration limited resources. “Patients who have the best chance of getting better are our first priority. Patients will be evaluated for the best plan of care and dying patients will be provided comfort care.”

The letter explains the policy in the event of a shortage of ICU beds and ventilators: “If you (or a family member) becomes ill and your medical doctor believes that you need extra care in an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) or Mechanical Ventilation (breathing machine) you will be assessed for eligibility based only on your specific condition.”

Some of the conditions that may make a person ineligible are listed as “severe heart, lung, kidney or liver failure; Terminal cancers; Severe trauma or burns.”

A statement issued Thursday night by Dr. Adnan Munkarah, executive vice president and chief clinical officer of Henry Ford Health System, confirmed the authenticity of the draft letter, but stressed that it reflects a “worst case scenario.”

“With a pandemic of this nature, health systems must be prepared for a worst case scenario,” Munkarah said. “Gathering the collective wisdom from across our industry, we carefully crafted our policy to provide critical guidance to healthcare workers for making difficult patient care decisions during an unprecedented emergency.”

He added, “These guidelines are deeply patient focused, intended to be honoring to patients and families. We shared our policy with our colleagues across Michigan to help others develop similar, compassionate approaches. It is our hope we never have to apply them and we will always do everything we can to care for our patients, utilizing every resource we have to make that happen.”

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The draft letter was leaked online Thursday when Nicholas Bagley, a University of Michigan law professor, tweeted out an image of the letter on what appeared to be official hospital letterhead.

The full contents of the letter was printed by the Detroit Free Press (emphasis in original):

To our patients, families and community:

Please know that we care deeply about you and your family’s health and are doing our best to protect and serve you and our community. We currently have a public health emergency that is making our supply of some medical resources hard to find. Because of shortages, we will need to be careful with resources. Patients who have the best chance of getting better are our first priority. Patients will be evaluated for the best plan of care and dying patients will be provided comfort care.

What this means for you and your family:

1. Alert staff during triage of any current medical conditions or if you have a Do Not Resuscitate (DNR)/Do Not Attempt Resuscitation (DNAR) or other important medical information.

2. If you (or a family member) becomes ill and your medical doctor believes that you need extra care in an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) or Mechanical Ventilation (breathing machine) you will be assessed for eligibility based only on your specific condition.

3. Some patients will be extremely sick and very unlikely to survive their illness even with critical treatment. Treating these patients would take away resources for patients who might survive.

4. Patients who are not eligible for ICU or ventilator care will receive treatment for pain control and comfort measures. Some conditions that are likely to may [sic] make you not eligible include:

  • severe heart, lung, kidney or liver failure
  • Terminal cancers
  • Severe trauma or burns

5. Patients who have ventilator or ICU care withdrawn will receive pain control and comfort measures.

6. Patients who are treated with a ventilator or ICU care may have these treatments stopped if they do not improve over time. If they do not improve this means that the patient has a poor chance of surviving the illness — even if the care was continued. This decision will be based on medical condition and likelihood of getting better. It will not be based on other reasons such as race, gender, health insurance status, ability to pay for care, sexual orientation, employment status or immigration status. All patients are evaluated for survival using the same measures.

7. If the treatment team has determined that you or your family members does not meet criteria to receive critical care or that ICU treatments will be stopped, talk to your doctor. Your doctor can ask for a review by a team of medical experts (a Clinical Review Committee evaluation.)

Michigan has become an emerging hot spot for the coronavirus pandemic in the United States. The state’s top health official, Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, said hospitals in southeast Michigan are “at or near capacity.”

The Henry Ford Health System is one of the major hospital providers in the Metro Detroit area, along with the William Beaumont Health System. Both providers have said they were caring for more than 1,000 COVID-19 patients at their 13 hospitals. Due to the sudden surge, operating rooms were being converted into intensive care units, and clinics had been turned into rooms for patients needing other medical care.

On Wednesday, Beaumont Health said its hospitals were swamped with 650 patients who had tested positive for the COVID-19 virus and more than 200 with tests pending. It said it would transfer more people to its hospital in Wayne County and get help from other health care providers.

“The number of patients coming to our emergency rooms continues to grow rapidly,” Beaumont CEO John Fox said.

Fox told the Detroit Free Press on Wednesday that the pandemic is proving to be healthcare providers’ “worst nightmare,” noting that Beaumont is admitting 100 new coronavirus patients per day, at that time.

“What we all need to remember is that we got our first patient two weeks ago. So this is coming on hard and fast. This is definitely a biological tsunami,” he said.

“In my lifetime, we’ve never had a pandemic like this,” Fox said.

“Across our system, we are facing limitations and nearing capacity with our staffing, personal protective equipment, and mechanical ventilators,” said Beaumont’s chief operating officer Carolyn Wilson.

“The numbers are changing and increasing even in two-hour intervals,” said Bob Riney, the chief operating officer at Henry Ford, whose flagship hospital is in the city of Detroit.

Dr. Betty Chu, the chief clinical officer and chief quality officer at Henry Ford, predicted an “upcoming surge.” Chu noted that the hospital was already reallocating resources because the Henry Ford hospitals in West Bloomfield and Detroit have reached capacity due to COVID-19 patients.

“Today our capacity is quite full at those two hospitals — West Bloomfield and Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit,” Chu said Wednesday. “We fortunately have the luxury right now of having additional capacity at some of our other campuses.”

On Wednesday, Mary Macdonald, an Oakland County ER nurse, posted a viral video on Instagram detailing the harrowing conditions at southeast Michigan hospitals where medical staff are combating shortages of essential supplies and equipment to care for this surge of coronavirus patients.

“It’s getting to the point now that it’s going to be just like Italy,” Macdonald said. “From 10:00 PM last night to this morning, we intubated two of my patients within a half-hour. And upwards of 10 patients were put on ventilators. My patient took the last ventilator available in the hospital,” she said.

“Normally, if a patient was to pass away, it would be because we tried everything that we could, we did everything that we could, we had all the resources and all the people that we needed to help save this patient’s life, and it was just their time. And now we aren’t giving the patient the time to choose whether it’s their time or not. We’re choosing for them,” she said.

Macdonald also noted that the hospital is short of even basic supplies.

“Resources are very slim. We have no medications to keep these patients even ventilated, let alone ventilators,” she said, adding that they are out of medications like propofol to keep people sedated when they are intubated. She said they are even running out of Tylenol.

“There are no masks. There are no gowns. They’re running low on gloves because everyone has panicked and stockpiled this, so that medical staff doesn’t have it,” she said and then showed the disposable N95 mask she was required to stow in a brown paper bag after every workday to be reused for the rest of the year.

Macdonald urged her fellow Michiganders to take the social distancing instructions seriously in order to protect themselves and their neighbors from spreading the virus, otherwise the overwhelmed hospital system won’t be able to care for all the sick.

“We don’t have any ventilators to put these patients on,” Macdonald stressed. “So, we’re going to start making life or death decisions in regards to people’s care. So you’re going to come in and you’re going to get tagged whether you [are] deem[ed] necessary to even get intubated or are you being sent home to die. This is truly scary, and nobody is taking it seriously.”

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Khaldun, the chief medical office for Michigan’s Department of Health and Human Services, said the state is “probably a few weeks out” from hitting a peak in coronavirus cases. Michigan reported nearly 2,900 cases by Thursday and 60 deaths, both an increase of Wednesday’s statewide numbers.

Wayne County, home to Detroit, accounted for nearly half of the cases. Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus response coordinator, called Wayne a “hot spot” nationally and said she was concerned the county was “having a more rapid increase.”

Southeast Michigan, like New York City, is a hub for international travel. As the capital of the world’s auto industry, Metro Detroit has daily direct flights to and from major cities in Europe and Asia.

Although the virus is hitting the entire metro area hard, the city of Detroit is uniquely vulnerable to the pandemic. Despite its dramatic economic rebound in recent years after its municipal bankruptcy in 2013, the city is still one of the poorest in the nation, with a poverty rate three times higher than the national average, and the city’s population suffers in greater numbers from underlining conditions like diabetes and heart disease.

“Part of what we’re seeing in Detroit is that there’s such a high number of individuals who have those underlying conditions, who have diabetes and the heart disease, who may have obesity,” Khaldun explained.

On Tuesday, Marlowe Stoudamire, 43, one of the young entrepreneurs involved in rebuilding the city, died from complications from COVID-19. According to health officials at Henry Ford Health System, Stoudamire had “no known underlying health conditions or recent travel.”

The city of Detroit’s police force has also been hit especially hard by the coronavirus pandemic, as 331 Detroit officers and 70 civilian police employees have been quarantined since the outbreak, and two members of the force have died this week due to COVID-19.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Hey MSM, you got coronavirus as another opportunity to roast Trump… but do the polls agree?

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President Trump’s handling of the Covid-19 pandemic has been slammed by the mainstream media, with certain networks opting not to air his daily press briefings due to “misinformation.” But polls say the public disagrees.

The Washington Post has been fiercely critical of Trump since long before his election. Yet as the paper described his administration as barrelling “toward calamity” this week, a Washington Post-ABC News poll recorded Trump’s highest ever approval rating, with 48 percent of respondents giving the president the thumbs-up, compared to 46 percent disapproving.

That’s the first time Trump has scored positively on the Post’s poll, but when it comes to his handling of the ongoing pandemic which has killed more than 1,300 Americans thus far, the president’s results are even better. Fifty-one percent approve of his stewardship, while 45 percent don’t.

The results are played out across the board. Polls from Fox News, the Economist, Reuters, Gallup, Emerson and Axios all show positive results for Trump. Gallup’s poll found that 60 percent of Americans support Trump’s response to the crisis, while only 38 percent disapprove. Trump’s handling of the crisis has translated into a record high job approval rating in an average of national polls.

Yet the media tells a different story. President Trump’s daily press briefings are – to quote one NPR station in Seattle – so full of “false or misleading information” that the station will no longer air them.

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Staff at CNN and MSNBC have reportedly pleaded with network bosses to drop coverage of the briefings, and the New York Times ran a column on Thursday wondering aloud “should networks cover them?” Individual news personalities have excoriated the president for allegedly spreading baloney. MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow said on her show this week that if Trump “keeps lying…it’s going to cost lives.”

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But the public isn’t listening. The same Gallup poll whose respondents rated Trump at 60 percent found that out of all the institutions responding to the pandemic, Americans rated the news media the worst, with only 44 percent of Americans expressing any trust in it. Even Congress, a perennially unpopular institution in these kinds of surveys, scored higher than the media.

Trump’s bump in popularity can possibly be explained by the “wartime president” effect. In times of great crisis, the electorate tends to put partisan politics aside and rally around their leader. At least that’s how the theory goes. No US president has ever lost a re-election bid during wartime, and Trump has certainly attempted to portray the Covid-19 pandemic as a warlike situation. Describing the virus as an “invisible enemy,” Trump told reporters last week that “I view it as a, in a sense, a wartime president.” Whether Trump manages to keep the public on side as the death toll climbs, however, depends on his actions in the coming weeks.

The public’s falling trust in the media is a slightly more difficult trend to explain. The public’s confidence in journalism has been falling for the better part of a decade, yet the current crisis seems to have exacerbated the downward trend. For one thing, the general public could be tired of the media crying wolf too many times. Rachel Maddow, for instance, raised concern about Trump’s “misinformation,” yet cable news viewers will remember Maddow’s own spreading of bogus ‘Russiagate’ conspiracies during the first three years of Trump’s presidency.

Likewise, the public expects reporters to hold their leaders to account. Given the gravity of the coronavirus situation, the media could be grilling Trump on any number of issues, from his plan to reopen the American economy in a matter of weeks, to the breakdown of the $2 trillion stimulus bill he may sign shortly, to his reluctance to actually enforce the Defense Production Act to manufacture vital medical equipment.

Yet when reporters choose to scold Trump for “racism instead, the general public learns nothing new.

Trump’s gripes with the media are long-standing. However, the ongoing coronavirus pandemic seems to be winning more and more Americans over to his side.

EU left Italy ‘practically alone’ to fight coronavirus, so Rome looked for help elsewhere, incl Russia

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The EU’s initial response to the massive outbreak of coronavirus in Italy was largely “inadequate,” and a lack of European solidarity opened the doors for Russia and China, former Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini told RT.

The new epicenter of the dreaded pandemic, Italy, has been struggling to stop the spread of Covid-19 for weeks now. The disease has already killed more than six thousand people in the country, with over 60 thousand people infected.

EU tried to pin the blame on Italy

The EU clearly underestimated the virus, blaming the outbreak in Italy on its national healthcare system flaws, according to the two-time foreign minister and OSCE representative. As a result, Brussels, which preaches pan-European solidarity, failed to act when this solidarity was needed in the face of a crisis that eventually affected the entire bloc.

Frankly speaking, Brussels is not doing enough. At the very first moment, Italy was practically alone against the virus. Many said it was all because of the Italian habits, because Italians do not respect the rules. Suddenly, they realized all the other countries were equally affected.

The situation in other major EU states like Germany and France deteriorated rapidly, forcing them to deal with thousands of infected on their own soil.

“Everyone just focused on the situation at home before even thinking about helping others,” Andrea Giannotti, the executive director of the Italian Institute of Eurasian Studies, told RT.

European solidarity doesn’t exist, only China can help us: Serbia goes full emergency over coronavirus

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The lack of solidarity was recently noted from outside of the bloc – Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic decried European solidarity as a myth, while praising Beijing for its assistance. His remarks came after Serbia received five million masks from China, which it could not get in Europe.

The EU is now trying “to do more” and somehow “make up” for its initial poor execution of a coordinated response, former Italian MP Dario Rivolta said.

Brussels has indeed ramped up its efforts, suspending the bloc’s strict Stability and Growth Pact regulating budgetary policy among others. Frattini particularly hailed this decision, which allows Rome to act freely in terms of budgetary spending, as “very important.” But this came only after Europe “realized its [measures] were inadequate to give a united response.”

Still, it is not enough, Rivolta told RT, adding that “for the moment,” there are no major changes. And while financial relief is necessary, there are other things to be considered, such as medical assistance.

“As for the medical aspects, the only thing that the EU did up to now was to put barriers between Italy and other countries.”

Huge support in terms of expertise

At one point, requests for help were sent out all over the world, according to Giannotti.

“Some Italian embassies were tasked with negotiating with local governments in order to find any opportunities to receive assistance from abroad, including help with equipment, which Italy lacks.” Russia and China were among those who responded.

In total, Moscow prepared nine cargo planes with emergency aid, delivering vital medical equipment and supplies, as well as bringing experienced specialists in infectious diseases and military doctors to Italy. Now they will be deployed to the most affected regions in the country’s north.

Frattini said the help was of the utmost importance: “What Russia has done is not comparable to what other countries have done, including China because China also sent something but not comparable with the support provided by Russia.”

The specialists have provided “very huge support in terms of expertise… in terms of virology.” 

With united Europe MIA in its Covid-19 response, worst-hit nations turn to ‘evil’ Russia & China for help

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The assistance serves as a gesture of solidarity in times of European sanctions on Moscow and the counter-measures, Giannotti said. Sending help “despite [the fact] the situation in Russia itself may also worsen” means it is a clear message that Moscow is ready to talk and settle issues with Europe when there is a greater need for cooperation.

Speaking to RT, the Italian ambassador to Russia, Pasquale Terracciano, agreed that a joint approach is the best way to put an end to the pandemic.

Thanking Moscow for the contribution, he said: “It will be crucial to recover from this tragic situation, hopefully soon.”

Homeland Security warns terrorists may exploit COVID-19 pandemic

By Alexander Mallin and Josh Margolin – 3/25/2020

A Department of Homeland Security memo sent to law enforcement officials around the country warns that violent extremists could seek to take advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic by carrying out attacks against the U.S.

“Violent extremists probably are seeking to exploit public fears associated with the spread of COVID-19 to incite violence, intimidate targets and promote their ideologies, and we assess these efforts will intensify in the coming months,” according to the intelligence bulletin, compiled by the agency’s Counterterrorism Mission Center and Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction Office.

At this time, DHS said it has “no information indicating any active plotting is underway,” but that it has observed certain extremist groups, both foreign and domestic, looking to spread misinformation about the coronavirus.

The memo, which was circulated on Monday, comes after assurances from FBI Director Chris Wray in a video message that agents would be even more vigilant in monitoring threats to the U.S. as the virus spreads.

“With all the worry and uncertainty out there, we want the public to know that there are still things they can count on: We’re here, and we’re going to stay here, to protect them, no matter what,” Wray said. “Because our criminal and national security adversaries sure aren’t going to take a day off — whether that’s for the coronavirus or, for that matter, anything else.”

Among the activities by extremist organizations cited in the DHS bulletin is a clipping from a weekly ISIS newsletter, which called for supporters to carry out attacks against overburdened health care systems in various Western countries.

Another portion of the bulletin singles out activity by white supremacists online who the DHS says have “advocated for violence against a range of targets, including critical infrastructure and faith-based and minority communities — including Asian Americans in response to the COVID outbreak.”

ABC News reported on Monday on an alert from the FBI’s New York field office that showed intelligence gathered on racist extremist groups, including neo-Nazis, that were encouraging followers who contract COVID-19 to spread the disease to Jewish people and police officers.

“I Don’t Care! I Don’t Care! I Don’t Care!” Pelosi Snaps at CNN’s Dana Bash For Asking About Trump’s Plans to Put America Back to Work (VIDEO)

By Cristina Laila – March 24, 2020

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi snapped at CNN’s Dana Bash Tuesday afternoon when the host brought up Trump’s recent remarks suggesting bringing Americans out of quarantine and back to work.

“I don’t have time to follow people’s twits…tweets, Twitters, whatever, tweets — so don’t expect me to comment on that,” Pelosi said.

“Well, even beyond Twitter, the President of the United States is signaling that he could open it up,” Bash said.

“What is your opinion on that?” Bash said pressing Pelosi.

“I don’t care! I don’t care! I don’t care!” Pelosi said as CNN’s Dana Bash brought up Trump’s plans to open America back up for business soon.

“It is not scientific based — he’s notion mongering,” Pelosi slurred.

Of course Pelosi doesn’t care about Americans going back to work. She wants America shut down while she holds the country hostage and tries to shove her Socialist wish list through Congress.

President Trump on Tuesday appeared on Fox News for a town hall to discuss his administration’s ongoing efforts to combat the Coronavirus.

Trump said he would likely open the country back up by Easter (April 12).

“I would love to have [the country] open by Easter,” Trump said. “It’s such an important day for other reasons.”

Los Angeles County Sheriff Closing All Gun Retailers, Says They Are ‘Not An Essential Function’

 

Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva has announced that they will be closing all gun retailers as they are “not an essential function.”

Sheriff Villanueva also added 1,300 more deputies to patrol the county and released 1,700 “nonviolent” inmates from county jails since Governor Gavin Newson issued a stay-at-home order in the state.

Speaking to Fox 11, Villanueva claimed to support the Second Amendment, but spewed anti-gun talking points while announcing the gun store shut down.

“We will be closing them, they are not an essential function,” Villanueva said. “I’m a supporter of the 2nd amendment, I’m a gun owner myself, but now you have the mixture of people that are not formerly gun owners and you have a lot more people at home and anytime you introduce a firearm in a home, from what I understand from CDC studies, it increases fourfold the chance that someone is gonna get shot.”

The station reports that he also freed 10% of the inmate population from county jails — nonviolent offenders with misdemeanor sentences that were up within 30 days.

“We’re gonna keep violent felony suspects who are a threat to the community in the jail no matter what,” Villanueva said. “Anybody who has an idea that somehow we’re not going to be hard on crooks out there on the streets, they’re tragically mistaken, there’s twice as many deputies on the street now so the odds of you getting caught are a lot higher.”

Though he has doubled the police patrol, he claims that the National Guard is not active in the county, despite photos posted to social media that show large amounts of military vehicles.

“If we start losing major portions of our sworn personnel, that impacts our ability to man jails or our patrol obligations, and were running out of people to do that, if were in that position typically our counterparts in LAPD they’ll be in the same boat, then we can use the National Guard to start assigning them to security operations,” Villanueva said.

On Monday, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court denied an emergency request that would have blocked the governor’s order to close all gun retailers in the state in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

The court ruled on Sunday evening that the gun shops could be closed down, letting the order go into effect on Monday.

The gun shop shut down was part of an order by Democrat Governor Tom Wolf that closed all businesses that are not considered to be “life sustaining.” Gun rights groups argued before the Supreme Court that this should include weapons retailers, but they were denied.

The order shut down the stores on Monday without any timeline for when they can reopen.

 

WATCH: COUPLE CASUALLY LOOTS CORONAVIRUS SUPPLIES FROM SAN FRANCISCO WALGREENS

Watch: Couple Casually Loots Coronavirus Supplies from San Francisco Walgreens

‘I hope you overdose,’ man filming tells looters

By Adan Salazar – March 24, 2020

A man and a woman casually looted items from a local Walgreens pharmacy in San Francisco, as customers and workers helplessly looked on.

The couple was filmed looting last week at a Walgreens on Drumm Street, near the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge.

“I hope the drugs are good,” one worker tells the pair, as they continue to fill reusable shopping bags with various items.

“Pieces of shit,” another man filming says, adding, “I hope you overdose.”

A similar incident was documented at another San Francisco-area Walgreens store earlier this month.

Thieves have taken to openly pilfering merchandise since the state’s passage of Proposition 47, which reduces theft of up to $950 in merchandise to a mere misdemeanor crime, but criminals appear more emboldened in the wake of coronavirus panic-buys.

Similarly, police in Philadelphia have announced they will no longer prosecute thefts or other nonviolent crimes ostensibly to keep coronavirus from spreading in jails.

“Instead, they’ll briefly detain the suspect to confirm identity and fill out arrest warrant paperwork, then release the suspect,” reports Reason.com. “The arrest warrant will be served at a later time when the coronavirus risk has faded.”

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