‘That’s why I’m at my house’: Ohio student who tested positive for COVID-19 last week throws a house party for 20 friends – and tells cops he was quarantining by staying at home
- Ohio police officers found 20 Miami University students at a house party on Saturday afternoon
- When they scanned the ID of a resident of the house, it revealed he had been diagnosed with coronavirus the week before
- Body cam footage captured the interaction between the bemused officer and the student
- The student appeared to believe he was quarantining by staying at his own home despite there being 20 people at the party
- Six students were cited and received a $500 fine
- The university has experienced a troubling spike since students began to return
A student in Ohio who tested positive for coronavirus told police officers ‘that’s why I’m at my house’ when they questioned why he was hosting a party for 20 people during his 14-day quarantine period.
Over the Labor Day weekend, six Miami University students received citations for the party which breached the state’s cap on ten people at gatherings.
Oxford police officers noticed the crowd in the house on E. Walnut Street at around 4pm Saturday and body cam footage shows the astounded officer uncovering the host had coronavirus.
It comes as Miami University experiences a troubling spike in cases but announced Wednesday that it still plans to begin limited in-person classes.
Scroll down for video
Officers found 20 Miami University students at a party where the host had coronavirus
A resident of the house admitted he had coronavirus and should be quarantining
The recording of Saturday’s party shows police approaching the group of young men sitting outside the house and asks to talk to a person who lives there.
One man steps forward and identifies himself, admitting that he knows he’s broken the state’s law on gatherings with no more than ten people.
According to Cincinnati.com, the man said that eight people lived in the house and the others had stopped by.
As the officer took his ID and ran it through the police database, he made the surprising discovery of the party host’s coronavirus diagnosis.
‘I’ve never seen this before. There’s an input on the computer that you tested positive for COVID,’ the officer says, which the student confirms, revealing he had received the diagnosis just a week before.
‘Are you supposed to be quarantining?’ the officer asks.
‘Yeah. That’s why I’m at my house,’ the student states.
‘So you have other people here, and you’re positive for COVID? You see the problem? How many other people have COVID?’ the officer then asks.
The student initially claims that they all do but then back tracks to say he thinks just two.
‘That’s what we’re trying to prevent, man. We’re trying to keep this town open,’ the officer states.
‘I know. That’s why I’m staying home,’ the student claims.
Five residents of the house and a sixth man were cited a civil penalty that carries no criminal charge but comes with a $500 fine. One of the people cited was 20 years old and the other five were aged 21.
Oxford police officers noticed the crowd in the house on E. Walnut Street at around 4pm Saturday. When they approached to break it up, they found 20 young men inside
Six people who were are the party were cited and received a $500 fine
The resident who had coronavirus appeared to believe he was quarantining by staying at his own home despite there being 20 people at the party at the house
Cincinnati.com says that one of the residents of the house came to the police department after the citation and attempted to press trespassing charges against those who did not live there and were at the home.
The police report states that this resident claimed he had finished a coronavirus quarantine on September 4 and did not participate in Saturday’s party.
He was told he could not file charges on behalf of the entire household and to instead appeal the citation allegations.
The report adds another resident claimed they were in bed sick and did not participate in the gathering.
Oxford police said the citations would also be reported to university officials. It is not known what action the school may take against the students.
They have asked those who may have been at the party earlier and left when police arrived to now get tested.
‘We do not know if anybody else at that party was aware of the COVID-positive residents because some of them left while the officer was there,’ Lt. Lara Fening told Local 12.
‘We want to stay safe; we want to be healthy; we want everyone around us to be healthy; we want this town to be thriving; we don’t want this town to be shut down again. We want the underclassmen to come back.’
It comes as Miami University experiences a troubling spike in cases as students returned to the town but announced Wednesday that it still plans to begin limited in-person classes
The university said it will continue to bring 40 percent of classes back to campus this month
Nearly one in every 17 students at Miami University has now tested positive with coronavirus as cases rose to 1,117, many of them in the last two weeks, according to WCPO.
Miami University president Gregory Crawford claims off-campus parties are linked to most of the cases.
Despite the university delaying the start of the school year, students began to return to the town in late August when partying began.
‘Those early weekends in August, we saw an uptick in parties and gatherings,’ Crawford said. ‘I think that’s what is responsible for the surge today.’
Other universities in the area have not seen the same spike with the University of Cincinnati, which is similar in size, recording only 147 cases in the last two weeks.
Yet, Miami University has chosen to continue with its plan to begin in-person classes again from September 21, it announced Wednesday.
The on-campus population will be reduced to 40 percent through remote learning.
Students returning to live on campus will have to be tested immediately while those living off campus will be tested at random. The school says it will be working to ensure students quarantine if they test positive.
Ohio has 126,046 confirmed cases of coronavirus and 4,034 deaths.
On Thursday, the United States reached over 190,900 coronavirus deaths. There are more than 6.36million confirmed cases.