Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell and Police Chief Susan Ballard said today the city will no longer impose late evening/early morning curfews such as the 11 p.m. – 5 a.m. restriction that was in place over this past, three-day Easter weekend.
The curfew resulted in “very, very little traffic” on Oahu streets, Caldwell said. “Given the result, and after sitting down with Chief Ballard today … we’ve concluded we’re not going to do this in the future, that it served its purpose … and probably won’t have to happen again.”
Caldwell said he wanted to “allay the concerns” raised by the public that curfews were going to be a weekly occurrence each weekend when they’re not.
Ballard said that over the weekend, seven arrests were made and more than 150 citations issued for violating the curfew, but all were stopped initially for other types of criminal or traffic offenses. “They were not specifically (stopped) for curfew, they’re what we call a secondary offense,” she said. So the primary was either a crime occurred or some kind of traffic violation.”
The curfew was expected to make “a minimal impact but also send a strong message and part of that is no one should be out between 11 and 5 unless your really are an essential worker doing essential business,” Caldwell said. A primary reason was to stress that people should stay home during a three-day holiday weekend, when there may be more inclination to gather to celebrate.
Caldwell said the curfew was “probably the first one, that I can imagine, since World War II.”
Ballard said there continues to be blatant violations of the social-distancing orders.
“We saw people partying during the day, with a deejay, up on top of one of our trails. ‘Shame on you!’” Ballard said. “If we can find out who they are, we definitely will be issuing citations … this is not something that should be taken lightly. This is people’s lives that are in danger.”
Caldwell also said fabric stores on Oahu will now be considered essential businesses and can reopen on a limited basis.