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'There Is No Crime Holiday': Mayor Clarifies Suspension Of In-Person Officer Responses

Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley (foreground) and Cincinnati Police Chief Eliot Isaac at a 2017 news conference.
Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley (foreground) and Cincinnati Police Chief Eliot Isaac at a 2017 news conference.

Cincinnati's Health commissioner reported there are now 16 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the city, and that includes four positive test results returned Tuesday.

Melba Moore said the latest cases are a female and three males.

Moore said 23 people have been tested at the city's health clinics, but she was unable to say how many have been tested in the city.

Moore also had a message for anyone who was at Kickbacks Cincy at 8087 Vine St. or Celebrities at 7617 Reading Rd. on March 13.

"We've been notified that someone visited those two clubs, nightclubs on March 13," Moore said. "They tested positive and that's why we're asking individuals who were in that particular place, places that they also monitor their symptoms."

Meanwhile, Cincinnati Police Chief Eliot Isaac responded to reports that two city police officers have tested positive for COVID-19. He said that's not been confirmed.

"We have had a number of encounters where officers believe they may have encountered someone who was sick," Isaac said. "No one has been confirmed to have had the coronavirus that has been encountered with one of our officers that we've been made aware of. We have had a number of officers that have been sick. We had an officer very recently that was sick. However, they were tested and it was negative."

Mayor John Cranley spoke about a release Monday night from the police department about suspending "in-person officer response" to some calls for service. He said the release was misunderstood.

"All crimes will be enforced. All crimes will be responded to," Cranley said. "There is no crime holiday. There is no hiatus on enforcement. Obviously as we've been stressing for the last two weeks, we have to protect our police officers. And we have to be careful in the ways in which we enforce, but we will enforce all laws."

The police department will still respond to all emergency calls, and some calls for service. But there are some reports that may be taken online or by telephone. Those include:

  • Assault reports (if no medical attention is necessary and suspect is no longer present)
  • Breaking and entering (where no suspect or possibility of property recovery)
  • Criminal damaging
  • Dog bites
  • Lost property
  • Lost or stolen license plates
  • Menacing report (unless suspect is expected or threatens to return or is part of the elements of domestic violence)
  • Phone harassment
  • Property damage
  • Found property
  • Theft report (both misdemeanor and felony where there is no possibility of immediate apprehension of property recovery and the value of the stolen is less than $5000, unless stolen item is a firearm)

Cranley also praised residents and especially businesses who are complying with the statewide stay-at-home order to help slow the spread of COVID-19.

"I am proud of the people of Cincinnati who by and large are complying," Cranley said. "And when I say that I am both thanking you for your compliance. But I'm also recognizing that your compliance comes at a very heavy cost personally and financially."

The statewide order began Monday night at 11:59 p.m. and continues through April 6.

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