Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff-COVID-19 briefing, April 19,2020-Photo-COSA Facebook
SAN ANTONIO (KTSA News) – The number of COVID-19 cases in San Antonio and Bexar County has climbed to 1,015, and one additional death has been reported.
A man in his 70s who resided at Southeast Nursing and Rehabilitation Center has passed away, bringing the total of coronavirus-related deaths at that facility to 18. Mayor Ron Nirenberg says the Hispanic male had underlying health conditions.
There have been a total of 39 local COVID-19 related deaths in our community. Eighty-one people are hospitalized with the novel coronavirus, and 24 are on ventilators.
Bexar County Nelson Wolff announced that five more inmates have tested positive for COVID-19, for a total of 20 cases at the Bexar County Jail. Three of the inmates are hospitalized.
Nirenberg and Wolff reminded area residents that the requirement for people ten years or older to wear masks in public whenever social distancing is not possible will go into effect at midnight.
The order also mandates that businesses provide face coverings to their employees who are in close proximity to co-workers or the public.
San Antonio City Attorney Andy Segovia says stores will adopt their own policies in deciding whether to allow people to enter their establishments without wearing a face covering.
As far as enforcing the order, Segovia says the City will use discretion.
“We’re going to emphasize again, compliance on the part of the public,” said Segovia. We’re not out to fine people. We’re not out to increase the fear level at all, but we want people to take it seriously.”
He said if there are egregious violations, “yes, there will be fines.”
The fine for violating the face covering requirement is $1,000.
W0lff expressed concerns about people who are holding rallies in defiance of statewide orders prohibiting gatherings of more than 10 people, such as the InfoWars protesters who gathered at the State Capitol in Austin Saturday. They were calling for an end to the ‘Stay Home’ orders and demanding that businesses reopen now.
“What are they thinking?” Wolff asked at Sunday’s COVID-19 briefing.
He noted that he saw photos of the protest and most in the crowd didn’t have face coverings and were not observing social distancing guidelines. Wolff said some people who have no symptoms may be infected with COVID-19 and spread it to others.
“They may think they’re ‘macho’ by being out there, but what they’re doing is, they’re threatening everybody in their community,” said Wolff. “It’s just hard for me to conceive that people can be that stupid.”