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Columbus City Attorney Cracking Down On Parties That Violate Gatherings Ban

City Atty. Zach Klein and Columbus Councilmember Shayla Favor.
Nick Evans
City Atty. Zach Klein and Columbus Councilmember Shayla Favor.

Columbus City Attorney Zach Klein is cracking down on house parties, saying too many people are ignoring gathering restrictions during the coronavirus pandemic.

Klein says he wants Columbus Police officers to issue citations to anyone defying the state’s order prohibiting gatherings of 10 or more people. 

Police have received complaints about the Ohio State University District, short-term rentals and other areas of the city. Klein says warnings are no longer enough.

"To address this community-wide health emergency, we need community-wide compliance," Klein wrote in a press release.

The directive follows the extension of Ohio's stay-at-home order, which tells residents to avoid all non-essential travel and closes all non-essential businesses, through May 1.

Klein says those caught in violation of the order face a second-degree misdemeanor. The penalty includes probation, up to 90 days in jail and/or a $750 fine.

Do you have questions about Ohio's response to the coronavirus? Ask below as part of our Curious Cbus series.


Debbie Holmes has worked at WOSU News since 2009. She has hosted All Things Considered, since May 2021. Prior to that she was the host of Morning Edition and a reporter.