Authorities in Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, will beef up patrols on the city’s beaches to clear them of tourists who refuse to abide by the city’s measures to mitigate the spread of Covid-19.
Depending on the severity of the infraction, officers will be able to impose fines and even arrest those who refuse to follow the preventative guidelines.
The decision came after local reporter Doraliz Terrón was verbally and physically attacked by two foreign tourists while reporting on visitors and businesses not complying with the prohibition on beach service.
The two men have since been identified as Terry Redue and Guy Carey of Vancouver, Canada.
“If people don’t want to leave [the beaches voluntarily], we will have to use public force to remove them,” Puerto Vallarta Mayor Arturo Dávalos Peña told a press conference on Wednesday.
In reference to Fidencio’s Restaurant, where Monday’s incident took place, he said he ordered it to be shut down, as well as “all those who are not respecting the health measures.”
Dávalos’ original order to close the beaches included patrols, but after navy officers whom Terrón asked for help did nothing to enforce the guidelines or ensure her safety, he said he recognized it was necessary to reinforce security operations on the beaches.
The reinforcements will marshal officers from Civil Protection, the fire department, police, National Guard and navy to ensure “the safety and, of course, health of all of us who live here in the municipality of Puerto Vallarta.”