If USA wasn't finding it tough to control the spread of Coronavirus already, authorities in Florida may have found that their task is getting tougher. According to Sheriff Russ Gibson of Osceola County, some elements in his area are deliberately trying to infect others by organizing what he refers to as 'COVID-19 parties.'
He informed the media that his office has, in recent times, received 600 complaints about excessive noise. Some of those cases are of these parties which are usually organised at vacation rental homes.
"They're being referred to, from what I'm being told, as COVID-19 parties where they're actually getting together and they're trying to mingle to potentially spread the virus amongst each other if they're asymptomatic or whatever the case might be," the Sheriff said.
The law enforcement agencies believe that the parties can range from average-size get-togethers where only 50 or so people attend, to massive events with as many as 400 in attendance. The police found about one such party where a young man shot another person.
Osceola county has witnessed a spike in COVID-19 cases and the police thinks such parties may have played a part. They have also been able to identify three housing colonies as the hotbed of such events.
What makes the situation even more troublesome is that the ordinary citizens who live in these communities are afraid of the elements involved. The police thinks these are not merely nuisance makers but people from more sinister backgrounds.
"Well, a lot of times, we've been finding out that there are people here that are unsavory people that you wouldn't want in your neighborhoods. There are some gangs, that are renting these houses, and they're coming here to Osceola County. And this is something that we have to protect our residents with," Sheriff Gibson told a local news agency.
The police have even managed to record a video of the party. At this event, the participants blocked an intersection with their cars so that they can make merry in the middle of the road. The ones who organise the party are those who are suffering from COVID-19 but are asymptomatic, thereby avoiding any suspicion on the part of those who have been invited.
What is worrying authorities is not just the prospect of the young men and women who are participating in the reverie getting infected but the people they will subsequently get in touch with.
Osceola County has recorded as many as 5,556 cases so far and 38 fatalities. The police would probably be cracking down harder on events suspected to be of this type in the future. But they would do so with caution considering the kind of people who may be behind this.