West Michigan diner owner out of jail after ignoring COVID-19 orders

Published: Mar. 23, 2021 at 3:57 PM EDT
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HOLLAND (AP) - A West Michigan restaurant owner who likened the state’s coronavirus restrictions to her childhood in communist Poland has been released from jail for ignoring orders to shut down.

Marlena Pavlos-Hackney spent four nights in jail. She paid a $15,000 fine and satisfied authorities that Marlena’s Bistro and Pizzeria in Holland finally would remain closed while it lacks a food license.

State regulators yanked the restaurant’s food license in January for serving indoor diners and committing other violations related to preventing the spread of COVID-19. But Marlena’s Bistro stayed open.

Republican State Sen. Tom Barrett of Charlotte said Pavlos-Hackney was a “political prisoner of the pandemic.”

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