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Council Supports OC Sheriff’s Challenge to Prisoner Release

Post Date:12/18/2020 3:31 pm

The City Council on Friday, Dec. 18 voted unanimously to take legal action in support of Orange County Sheriff Don Barnes’ challenge to a court order regarding the release of inmates.

 The Council voted in a special meeting to direct the City Attorney’s office to file an amicus brief (or join another city’s) early next week in support of the sheriff’s legal challenge.

On Dec. 11, the Orange County Superior Court ordered Barnes to release over 1,000 inmates from County jails (about half of the total inmate population), to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. If the order stands, the inmates could be released in January.

The issue is “very concerning for our residents and business,” Newport Beach Mayor Brad Avery said. “The Council has received many emails urging support of this action.”

The inmate release would include many convicted of serious, violent crimes, Council members said.

“We know this a difficult time for everyone, given the state of the pandemic,” Avery said. “However, Sheriff Barnes has taken significant action to keep inmates safe. Releasing potentially dangerous criminals into the community is not the answer.”





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COVID-19 Coronavirus

The Federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is responding to an outbreak of respiratory disease caused by a novel (new) coronavirus that was first detected in China and has now been detected globally. The virus has been named “SARS-CoV-2” and the disease it causes has been named “coronavirus disease 2019” (abbreviated “COVID-19”).

The City of Newport Beach is working with federal, state, and local partners including the CDC, the OC Health Care Agency (OCHCA), and health care providers to prepare and appropriately care for people who may be at risk for illness associated with COVID-19 or who have tested positive for COVID-19. This is a rapidly changing situation, and we will share more as we are updated from our colleagues at the local, state and/or federal level.

Help Prevent the Spread of Coronavirus

  • The Governor of California enacted an Executive Order for all individuals living in the State of California to stay home or at their place of residence except for essential needs
  • It is imperative for everyone to practice social distancing by keeping at least six feet away from others when performing essential need activities outside of your homes.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hand cleaners are also effective.
  • Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
  • If you get sick with influenza, the CDC recommends that you stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to limit spreading the infection.
  • For more information, please visit the following websites:


Expand/Contract Questions and Answers

  • What is the Coronavirus?

  • How does the Coronavirus Spread?

  • What should the community do?

  • I have more specific COVID-19 questions. What other resources are available with information?