Friday June 5, 2020 News

Peaceful protesting continued Thursday evening in the center of downtown Okeechobee, on the intersection of 441 and 70 despite the rain. The protests are a response to the unjust death of Minnesota resident George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police officers. Protest organizer and Okeechobee resident Amber Sewell says the protests will continue today and Saturday and culminate with a peaceful march through town Okeechobee resident Stevie Brantley has donated t-shirts to be handed out at the event and there will also be refreshments. Sewell says that while there has been positive feedback from a weeklong of protests, there has also been some negative. All four ex Minneapolis police officers involved in George Floyds death now face criminal charges and are all currently in custody.

Effective today, Gov. Ron DeSantis has reopened bars, movie theaters and other entertainment venues in 64 counties, announcing Florida’s move into Phase 2 or reopening. The changes don’t apply, however, to the three hardest-hit counties in the state: Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach. Under his executive order, bars will be able to open at 50% capacity indoors, and at 100% outside with proper social distancing between tables. The reopening also includes businesses such as movie theaters, bowling alleys and concert halls at 50% capacity, with social-distancing restrictions as well. Restaurants, retail establishments and gyms, currently operating at 50%, could go to full capacity, so long as they have the room to practice social distancing. Nightclubs are not included in this phase. All persons in Florida are still encouraged to avoid congregating in groups larger than 50.

Due to an increase in COVID- 19 testing in Glades County there has been a spike in positive cases in the past few days. There are 38 additional clustered positive cases, making the total number 70. Glades County Public Safety encourages all citizens to continue to practice social distancing, wash your hands often with soap and water, cover you cough and sneezes, and disinfect surfaces as often as possible. Drive- thru COVID-19 testing is available for any resident- Please contact Glades County Department of Health at 863-946-0707 to schedule an appointment for Monday June 8. There are no criteria for testing. You must be 18 years of age or older.

The current number of Hendry County residents who have tested positive for COVID-19 since testing began back in March is 501. The good news is, residents are still beating the virus, as the Department of Health reports that now 87 people have recovered, up by 34 since yesterday’s report. Now, the number ACTIVE positive cases of COVID-19 in Hendry County is now at 397. Residents of Hendry and Glades Counties can call the Clewiston Office at 863-983-1408 and in LaBelle 863-674-4041 for testing. For information on other cities and counties in the state, visit https://floridahealthcovid19.gov/. Hendry County’s COVID-19 Dashboard can be found at https://covid-19.hendryfla.net/

Crime stoppers of Palm Beach County is searching for Dwayne Williams. His last known address is NW 9th Ave., South Bay. He is wanted for burglary of an occupied dwelling, battery, criminal mischief and failure to appear for dealing in stolen property and false verification of ownership. If you have any information on the whereabouts of Dwayne Williams, contact Crime Stoppers of Palm Beach County.