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Boulder police will not be conducting traffic stops simply to ensure residents are following the state’s stay-at-home order, continuing its policy of education over enforcement when it comes to travel restrictions due to the new coronavirus.

Colorado Gov. Jared Polis issued a stay-at-home order March 25 that prohibits nonessential travel.

But while the travel restrictions are an executive order and are law, Boulder police, in keeping with the thought process of other Boulder County agencies, said the department hopes that people will voluntarily comply with the order.

“As we navigate through unprecedented times, we are aware that our actions have a direct positive or negative impact on the members of our community,” interim Boulder police Chief Carey Weinheimer wrote in a statement. “We believe that as a community we are all in this together and heed the guidance of local, state, and national public health experts to keep our family, friends, neighbors, first responders, health care workers, and public-facing workers safe and healthy. We pledge to do our part by informing, educating, and enforcing (only as a last resort) the directives laid out in the public health orders.”

The release said patrol officers “are operating under the assumption that most violations will be unintentional.”

That echoes Polis’ statements at a news conference Friday, in which he asked people to abide by the “spirit” of the orders for the safety of others and to use “common sense.”

“This is not a competition to see what you can get away with,” Polis said.

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