Chicago party with bouncers, 140 people cited for violating COVID-19 restrictions

Midwest

CHICAGO (NewsNation Now) — Chicago authorities shut down a party Sunday that had bouncers and more than 140 people inside, defying COVID-19 restrictions as cases continue to climb in the city.

Investigators responding to a complaint found a bouncer and a line of people in the Wicker Park neighborhood waiting to get into an event dubbed “Wicker Loft.” Chicago officials said there were more than 140 people inside not social distancing, and many weren’t wearing masks, NewsNation affiliate WGN reported.

The city issued four cease-and-desist orders for illegal business activity and multiple citations, including COVID-19 violations.

The city’s Department of Buildings also closed the second floor, where the party was held, for “dangerous and hazardous conditions.”

Chicago’s daily coronavirus case average is rising.

According to the latest Chicago Department of Public Health data, daily cases have increased to a 7-day rolling average of more than 1,650, which is up 11% from the previous week. Meanwhile, the citywide test positivity rate has climbed above 13%.

Since the start of the pandemic, more than 300 businesses have been cited for violating COVID-19 restrictions in Chicago, WGN reported.

A city alderman’s restaurant has received two citations for violating a ban on indoor dining.

Ald. Tom Tunney admitted this week to letting some regular customers dine inside his restaurant Ann Sather, calling it an error in judgement.

“We’ve been sporadically letting some people in, regulars at the restaurant, to accommodate them from time to time,” Tunney said Monday. “It’s done. It will not continue, as of today.”

The restaurant could face more than $10,000 in fines combined, according to the city’s Business Affairs and Consumer Protection Department.

Indoor dining has been shut down in the city since late October. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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