Couple arrested after boarding plane to Hawaii knowing they were infected with COVID-19, police say
HONOLULU - A couple traveling to Hawaii with their 4-year-old child was arrested over the weekend after allegedly boarding a plane from San Francisco despite knowing they had tested positive for the coronavirus, police said.
Kaua'i Police said Wesley Moribe and Courtney Peterson, who live in Wailua, traveled on a United Airlines flight headed for Lihue, Hawaii, on Nov. 29.
Police said the couple were instructed by the quarantine station at the San Francisco International Airport to isolate and not to board the plane.
RELATED: White House coronavirus task force: US ‘in a very dangerous place,’ COVID-19 risk at ‘historic high’
But the couple, allegedly knowing they were infected with the virus, traveled anyway.
Upon arrival to the Lihue Airport in Hawaii, the couple were identified and contacted by local authorities and booked for reckless endangering in the 2nd degree.
Mugshot of Courtney Peterson (L) and Wesley Moribe (R) taken outdoors due to COVID-19 measures. (Kaua‘i Police Department)
They were escorted by local personnel to a designated isolation room for further processing and investigation.
According to a KPD spokesperson, the couple were in possession of personal protective gear including gloves, a protective gown, face masks and shields.
"They knowingly boarded a flight aware of their positive COVID-19 test results, placing the passengers of the flight in danger of death," the report read.
The couple posted bail, which had been set at $1,000 each. The child was later released into the care of a family member and Child Protective Services was notified, the release said.
RELATED: Bush, Obama, Clinton say they’d get COVID-19 vaccine publicly to boost confidence
“The Kauai Police Department, working alongside our county and state partners, remain diligent in protecting the health and safety of our island,” said Chief of Police Todd G. Raybuck in a release. “We continue to request visitors and residents alike to follow the Governor’s Emergency Rules and take all necessary precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19.”
It remained unclear if any other passengers on the flight had also tested positive for the coronavirus.
This story was reported from Los Angeles.