Authorities closed the gym before dawn Monday, when they charged Smith and his partner Frank Trumbetti with contempt and disorderly persons offenses. The two men were living in the gym and had removed a front door in an attempt to foil a state lockdown.
But supporters showed little apparent concern for pandemic precautions, with almost none wearing masks and many clustering together.
“All government officials must call the front desk for permission to enter this facility,” it said.
“My bet is, if these two individuals that owned this gym … were outside protesting, they’d be just fine,” said the conservative congressman. “But because they were inside the gym … they got arrested. Do you think that‘s OK?”
It was padlocked under a court order on May 22, but was allowed to reopen on June 15 to accommodate two retail businesses located inside, court records say.
This article originally appeared on Cherry Hill Courier-Post: New Jersey gym owners reopen business, criticize Gov. Phil Murphy