Charges: Bar owner hosted card game in defiance of COVID-19 order

He's the first to be charged with violating the order closing dine-in service at bars and restaurants.
Author:
Publish date:
Shooters Bar and Grill

A bar owner in southern Minnesota has become the first person to be charged with violating Gov. Tim Walz's executive order temporarily closing bars and restaurants.

David Schuster, 57, has been charged with violating emergency powers after he entertained three people at Shooters Bar in Winnebago, Minnesota, on Mar. 22 – five days after the bar shutdown began.

A local police officer was carrying out a routine patrol of the city that evening, and noticed four parked vehicles outside of the bar at 560 Main Street.

He noticed that the doors to the bars were locked, so he knocked on the window. As he peered through he could see four men inside the bar "playing cards and drinking clear liquid out of glasses," per a criminal complaint.

One of the men was Schuster, and when quizzed by the officer about what they were doing in the bar, Schuster said: "It doesn't matter."

The officer advised Schuster of the executive order and went into the bar to tell the other three people inside they needed to leave.

Sign up for our BREAKING NEWS newsletters

One of the men said they didn't need to listen to the officer and said he should come back with a warrant.

Schuster meanwhile continued to protest, "noting that this is communism."

The trio eventually left after cleaning up after themselves as more police arrived at the scene.

The Star Tribune reports that seven other people have been charged as of Friday afternoon with breaking executive orders relating to the coronavirus outbreak, though the ACLU of Minnesota has argued that some of the charges – for example a woman driving without a license was hit with an extra charge of the "Stay at Home" order – are "mean-spirited." 

Next Up

Adam Thielen

Report: Still on COVID-19 list, Thielen not expected to play Sunday

Thielen was placed on the COVID-19/Reserve list on Monday.

Image from iOS (19)

Mask-wearing, distancing a common sight on MOA's Black Friday

Thousands of shoppers were out and about on Black Friday despite the COVID-19 situation.

Tim Walz

Gov. Tim Walz, MDH react to record-setting COVID-19 deaths

Minnesota can expect further bad news over the coming weeks.

covid-19, coronavirus

Record 101 COVID-19 deaths reported in Minnesota

The figures are from Wednesday, with no update provided on Thanksgiving.

Screen Shot 2020-11-27 at 9.29.12 AM

Target reveals its 'Cyber Week' online deals

The sales will run from Nov. 29 to Dec. 5.

Minneapolis police

Mayor Frey, Minneapolis police chief reveal new 'no-knock' policy

The new policy for Minneapolis Police Department was announced Wednesday.

Teddy Bridgewater

Coller: It's a what-if Sunday with Teddy Bridgewater's return

Matthew Coller writes a weekly Vikings column for BMTN, with more of his work found at Purple Insider.

Ambulance hospital emergency

15-month-old girl's death being investigated by police in Fargo

The child died four days after being found unresponsive.

PD Shimmers closeup

Man with Parkinson's lights up Plymouth with synchronized light show

"The best medicine I have for my disease is what I try to do with the light show," Mike Justak said.

Related

Screen Shot 2020-05-17 at 10.33.50 PM

AG Ellison sues Stearns County bar owner who plans to open

Bars and restaurants are still subject to a mandatory shutdown due to COVID-19.

Screen Shot 2020-07-01 at 8.34.45 AM

COVID-19 outbreak linked to another bar, this one in St. Cloud

Health officials are investigating 47 cases linked to downtown bars.

Shady's in Albany

UPDATE: Albany bar doesn't reopen after court ruling

Shady's in Albany, Minnesota, is preparing to reopen in violation of the governor's orders.

bar

14 MN bars, restaurants warned for alleged breaches of COVID-19 rules

Employees not wearing face masks was the main violation.

Screen Shot 2020-04-05 at 7.09.12 PM

Reports: Walz set to extend 'Stay at Home' order to May 4

The ongoing closure of dine-in service at bars and restaurant will also continue.

Bar beer

14 bars warned for COVID-19 violations are now in compliance

The DPS returned for follow-up checks at the affected bars.