Police broke up a massive party of more than 1,000 people near Florida State University

Bars and restaurants in Florida were packed over the weekend after Gov. Ron DeSantis signed an order allowing establishments to begin operating at 100 percent capacity. CNN's Alexandra Field reports.

Posted: Sep 29, 2020 5:41 PM
Updated: Sep 29, 2020 5:41 PM

Florida is opening up and its students are itching to party.

Police officers in Tallahassee, home of Florida State University's sprawling campus and three other universities, responded to more than a dozen calls in reference to large crowds last weekend, according to a statement from the Tallahassee Police Department.

One gathering at an off-campus apartment complex on Dixie Drive involved more than 1,000 people gathered outside along with 700 vehicles, police said. Officers arriving just before midnight were able to safely disperse the crowds with assistance from a Leon County Sheriff's Office helicopter. The apartment complex is about two miles from the FSU campus.

The massive party came as nearly 1,500 students have tested positive for the coronavirus since testing began August 2. Florida Gov. Rick DeSantis called for "some type of bill of rights for students" that would protect them from "draconian" punishments put in place to stop its spread, according to CNN affiliate WJXT.

"That's what college kids do, and they're at low risk," DeSantis said about the partying students. "And I just think that we've got to be reasonable about this and really focus the efforts on where the most significant risk is."

John Thrasher, FSU's president, appealed to students in a letter last month to wear masks and stay six feet apart, admonishing those who hosted or attended large parties or gatherings. FSU is currently seeing a downward trend in the number of positive Covid-19 cases, according to a school's spokesperson.

"The choices you make don't just impact you," Thrasher said in the September 18 letter. "They affect your friends, families, professors, FSU staff and the Tallahassee community at large, as well as our ability to hold in-person classes and future events and provide campus services."

More than 700,000 cases in the state

On the first weekend after Florida's Gov. Ron DeSantis lifted the Covid-19 ban on restaurants, clubs and bars, businesses in some areas were jam-packed with pre-pandemic-sized crowds.

The governor's order now allows businesses to reopen at full capacity, and even though people are still encouraged to practice safety protocols like wearing masks and staying 6 feet apart, they really didn't take the advice.

There are at least 701,302 cases of coronavirus in Florida and at least 14,037 people have died, according to Johns Hopkins University's tally of cases in the United States.

But Florida health officials reported 738 new cases of Covid-19 on Monday, the state's lowest reported number since the beginning of June. The state's total number of reported cases now stands at 701,302, according to the Florida Department of Health.

The last time the state reported under 1,000 new cases was the first week of June, according to Johns Hopkins.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 324537

Reported Deaths: 5594
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Marion44186858
Lake28094462
Allen18660301
Elkhart17663230
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Porter855386
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Noble264946
Henry256437
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Dubois245631
Dearborn228231
Jackson226334
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Gibson194926
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Ohio Coronavirus Cases

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Cases: 399808

Reported Deaths: 6346
CountyCasesDeaths
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Cuyahoga39132746
Hamilton31491372
Montgomery21355242
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Lucas15301420
Summit14667330
Stark9780209
Warren878777
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Lorain7149106
Clermont622953
Delaware597337
Licking589977
Trumbull5867148
Fairfield576464
Greene559568
Clark5438129
Allen518389
Medina496557
Marion489359
Wood4861108
Miami456268
Pickaway410548
Portage385574
Columbiana376599
Tuscarawas360567
Richland349639
Wayne340894
Mercer299248
Muskingum262510
Hancock257240
Ross251259
Darke246160
Auglaize243935
Erie240868
Ashtabula240454
Putnam234549
Geauga227051
Union20838
Scioto204316
Lawrence201139
Shelby199917
Athens19984
Seneca192919
Belmont176729
Madison172019
Sandusky166429
Huron163022
Preble162521
Defiance149923
Holmes146939
Knox139719
Logan139018
Jefferson138113
Fulton135826
Crawford134417
Washington133427
Ottawa128830
Ashland117328
Williams11479
Clinton113115
Highland108118
Brown10755
Hardin107019
Henry105423
Champaign10535
Jackson102012
Van Wert99918
Fayette97317
Guernsey96814
Morrow9682
Coshocton91015
Perry86613
Adams83813
Gallia81615
Pike7921
Wyandot76118
Paulding70012
Hocking68516
Noble65124
Carroll53210
Meigs41712
Monroe34921
Morgan2925
Harrison2433
Vinton2326
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