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Michigan AG Dana Nessel Says Rebel Barber 'Not A Hero,' 'Not A Patriot'

Says jail a 'last resort' but license suspended

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel gave an interview about 77-year-old Owosso barber Karl Manke who has refused to shut down his business during the COVID-19 lockdown.

A judge ruled against the state in its attempt to shut down Manke. And the county sheriff has refused to enforce the state’s executive orders. The state has suspended his barber license.

“We are not looking to throw people in jail. That to me is a very, very last resort,” Nessel said in an interview with Sinclair Broadcast Group Michigan. “He’s not a hero, to me. He’s not a patriot. A patriot is a person that fights all enemies to our country foreign and domestic and does everything possible to protect his fellow countrymen and countrywomen. To me, Mr. Manke is doing the exactly opposite of that. He’s being selfish.”

Nessel said Manke is helping spread the virus and she has been watching the Owosso barber.

“Is he using a fresh cape for every single individual? Is everybody who comes in there have face masks? I see his customers don’t have face masks. He’s wearing one. But is he wearing the same one all day long? … How can you be safe when we know it’s impossible to socially distance when you are cutting somebody’s hair.”

Nessel wonders how much the virus has spread because of the barber.

“I hope we don’t see an uptick in Owosso and his community just based on his behavior,” she said.

Shiawassee County has had 222 cases of COVID-19 and 19 deaths linked to the coronavirus as of May 15.