A Calgary preacher is in hot water once again. On Wednesday, April 8, Calgary Police announced that they fined a city preacher for failing to comply with COVID-19 public health orders. The Calgary preacher, Artur Pawlowski, had been warned a week before for holding gatherings that didn't follow current mandates.
Calgary Police announced that Pawlowski was slapped with a $1200 fine on for holding a public gathering in the city's Olympic Plaza.
The gathering is alleged to have had more than 15 people, which is now prohibited under the province's state of emergency. He was fined on Friday, April 3.
The Calgary Herald reported that complaints have been made against Pawlowski recently for failing to follow COVID-19 safety precautions.
Pawlowski runs a religious organization called Street Church and this isn't his first encounter with the cops.
The Calgary Police Service's Superintendent, Steve Barlow, said on Wednesday's press conference that Pawlowski is a known individual to the police. This is not the first time this month that he got up to public gatherings.
“He had been warned prior to and a summons was given to him for a gathering he was holding last week,” said Barlow.
On March 24, Street Church's official Facebook posted photos of an event in which a large group had gathered to receive food. Some photos depict people standing just inches away from each other.
[rebelmouse-image 25977000 photo_credit="Street Church | Facebook" expand=1 original_size="401x577"]
The gathering took place days after the province issued the two-metre rule, according to City News. Under the order, people are supposed to practice physical distancing and remain at least two meters away from each other.
Back in 2014, Pawlowski was fined for trying to crash the Calgary Stampede with his group of parishioners, as reported by the Calgary Herald. He broke a city bylaw and was fined $200 as a result.
Narcity has reached out to Street Church for comment and we will update this story when we receive a response.
According to CBC News, Pawlowski said that he doesn't think his gathering was disobeying any public health order. He accused the police of lying. He also said that he doesn't listen to "propaganda."
In another video posted on Street Church's Facebook on March 31, Pawlowski went to a local Walmart to point out that "hundreds of people" had gathered in the store for shopping purposes.
Pawlowski is scheduled to appear in a court hearing on June 12, 2020.
The Calgary Police told Narcity in an emailed statement that they are committed to enforcing public health orders issued by the province.
In addition to the Calgary Police, both Lethbridge and Edmonton Police have given out fines for breaking health orders.