Both the Roosevelt and Lea County Sheriff’s Office have posted statements on Facebook declaring that they will not be enforcing the public health mandates set by New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and the New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH).
In the statements, they recognize the hardship that local businesses have faced and that they see the need to re-open businesses. Both posts acknowledge that New Mexico State Police have a responsibility to respond to complaints about COVID-19 concerns.
The post by the Roosevelt County Sheriff’s Office also points out that “if they do not receive a complaint, they do not respond.”
Both of the sheriff’s offices said that they will support the rights of business owners to open their businesses — but that the businesses do so “discreetly and responsibly.” Both posts suggest that businesses should keep doors closed and locked while limiting the number of patrons inside.
Roosevelt Sheriff Malin Parker said he supports local county businesses opening up with the same guidelines big box stores have, and he feels the frustration mounting from his constituent’s.
“Has it become a threatening situation?” said Sheriff Parker. “I don’t think so not yet, but I feel like we’re on the cusp of that threatening situation, you know, people are, I guess, for lack of a better term, they’re tired of being told what they have to do. People are just getting so, morally compromised it’s just, it’s turning into a much worse situation than they believe that the actual sicknesses in, at least in our part of the states where the numbers are so low.”