The police department in Rumson, N.J. is making an example of a group of middle-aged revelers who gathered amid the statewide stay-at-home order for an impromptu Pink Floyd concert courtesy of two guitarists broadcasting their performance on Facebook Live. The police were reportedly forced to break up a party of dozens of adults who gathered on a front lawn to hear the British band’s tunes.
The department posted about the incident on their Facebook page, telling Rumson residents that coronavirus parties have to stop. If they are forced to break up another such party, all participants will be charged with disorderly conduct; charges are currently pending in this incident, which is under investigation.
The Facebook post was a balance of understanding, seriousness and seeming shock: “We were met with well wishes of ‘F-the police’ and ‘Welcome to Nazi Germany,” a Rumson PD spokesperson detailed in the post.
“Sadly I'm sure we all ‘wish we could be here,’ and the Rumson Police Department takes no enjoyment in ruining anyone’s fun!” the post continued, referencing one of Pink Floyd’s most famous lyrics. “However we ALL have a responsibility to take this pandemic SERIOUSLY and adhere to the social distancing requirement. We also need to be a good role model for our children and be kind and understanding during these times.”
Rumson Chief of Police Scott Paterson tells Yahoo Lifestyle that as far as he knows, this incident was a one-off within the community.
“Residents have been doing a phenomenal job,” he says. “And we’re hoping that this is going to be an anomaly.”
The post on the police department’s Facebook received hundreds of comments, mostly from community members expressing their shock that people were breaking the rules.
“Rumson PD, we are so thankful for you and all you do for our community,” one commenter wrote. “Truly heartbroken to hear anyone — especially adults living in our town — would be so disrespectful!”
“All people need to do is watch the news,” Chief Paterson says of why events like this are such a bad idea, also mentioning that his police department has been directly impacted by the virus and is working short-staffed. “This thing is killing people left and right. This is no joke, we need to take it seriously. I can’t reiterate that more.”
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