In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, Philadelphia police officers have been instructed to stop making arrests for certain non-violent crimes.
The department said individuals who would normally be arrested and processed at a detective division, will be temporarily detained to confirm identification and complete necessary paperwork. The individual will then be arrested on a warrant at a later date.
FOX 29's Steve Keeley reports the non-violent crimes include the following:
- All narcotics offenses
- Theft from persons
- Retail theft
- Theft from auto
- All bench warrants
- Stolen auto
- Economic crimes
2/2 Asked for comment @FOPLodge5 President John McNesby tells FOX29 News suspects will be scanned, identified, and arrested(picked up) later on arrest warrants to keep help lower chance of police being infected from any suspect who may have coronavirus @FOX29philly
— Steve Keeley (@KeeleyFox29) March 17, 2020
"We are supportive of Commissioner Outlaw’s directive on making arrests during the Coronavirus crisis," Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #5 President John McNesby said. "The directive was released to keep officers safe during this public-health crisis. Meanwhile, violent offenders will be arrested and processed with the guidance of a police supervisor."
Other adjustments to Philadelphia Police Department's operations include:
- Officers from various plain-clothes specialized units will be temporarily reassigned to uniform patrol duties.
- The “Live Stop” vehicle impoundment program will be suspended until further notice.
- Non-essential training has been temporarily suspended.
[via FOX 29]