Three protesters arrested during rally to fully re-open beaches

Posted at 5:18 PM, Apr 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-25 20:18:55-04

SAN DIEGO COUNTY (KGTV)-- San Diego County beaches will begin to open Monday at sunrise with limited access. But many in Encinitas protested the restrictions, saying they are un-American.

It's a gorgeous San Diego day, but not everyone is happy. Dozens of locals gathered at Moonlight Beach in Encinitas, protesting the beach closures.

"We need our beaches open, and we need our surf," one protester said. "Our small businesses depend on this!"

On Friday, San Diego County officials addressed this frustration, saying that they would allow ocean access in phases, starting on Monday, April 27, 2020.

"The best way from an economic standpoint to come out of this is in a gradual phased approach," San Diego County District 4 Supervisor, Nathan Fletcher said. "Not based on an arbitrary date or timelines, but based on the situation that we see."

Limited access includes swimming, surfing, kayaking, and paddle-boarding. But boating, group sports, and relaxing on the sand are still prohibited.

"That's still not good enough," protester Krista Curtis said. "We are American citizens. If I want to lay on the beach, I'm going to lay on the beach!"

10News cameras caught three protesters being arrested after they crossed into the sand beyond the caution tape. Deputies gave them citations for violating the public health order.

Meanwhile, in Escondido, little Victoria and Julian Singh are playing at home.

"They are loving it," their mother Oly said. "They do not understand what's happening outside."

Since the beaches are closed, the Singh family decided to bring the splash to their backyard. They inflated the kiddie pool and turned on the splash mat.

"I understand for people, the beach is their lives, especially when you're in San Diego County," Singh said. "For us, we are just trying to be extra safe during this time. Staying home, be grateful for all the essential workers who are out there, and trying to really lower the curve."

They said it is a small sacrifice that can have a big impact.

The cities of Solana Beach and Del Mar announced that despite the County's approval, they would continue to keep their beaches closed until they feel they are ready to reopen.