Police investigating after Oklahoma church allegedly continues hosting in-person services

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McLOUD, Okla. (KFOR) – It’s been over a week since Governor Kevin Stitt issued the “Safer at Home” executive order, but not everyone has been following those guidelines.

“They could be fined for it, yes,” said McLoud Police Chief Wes Elliott.

McLoud police are investigating after a complaint came in saying McLoud Church of Christ has not been following Gov. Stitt’s executive order.

Not only have they been gathering to worship, it’s been in groups of over 10 people and with members over the age of 65.

“Any time that we get a complaint from the public of somebody violating it, we have to go out and investigate that,” Chief Elliott said.

Elliott said he warned the church’s leaders on Wednesday morning, saying he has to enforce the executive order.

“It is a huge lifestyle change for a lot of them and it is a little difficult to understand what’s going on. A lot of the older folks we’ve talked to, some of them actually lived through the polio deal and they’re saying it didn’t affect everything as this thing is,” Elliott said.

A relative of one of the church’s members contacted KFOR, saying there were over 20 people at last Sunday’s service.

KFOR spoke with a member too, who confirmed this information. That person wanted to stay anonymous.

We tried talking with the church ourselves to get their side of the story. We called and emailed before stopping by, but weren’t able to get a hold of anyone.

“We give them the information and we tell them that they can’t be convening. Then if we have to enforce, hopefully it doesn’t get to that point,” said Elliot. “There could be a citation issued. I believe it’s a misdemeanor, as well.”

Elliott said community safety is a priority.

“Business as usual. We still have a job to do and we continue doing it,” Elliott said.

The department said jail time could also be a possibility for those violating the order.

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