Riverside County Sheriff Chad Bianco is working from home while in quarantine after he tested positive for coronavirus, he announced Wednesday afternoon.
Bianco’s children and wife also tested positive for the virus, but everyone in the family has recovered after “light symptoms,” the sheriff wrote in a Facebook post.
“Well, the virus made its way through the entire Bianco family,” he said in making the announcement.
Bianco added that he “held off the longest” and was asymptomatic aside from losing his senses of smell and taste.
Sgt. Lionel Murphy, a public information officer for the Sheriff’s Department, said he was not informed of when Bianco tested positive or how long the sheriff would be quarantining.
“All I know is that he decided to make a post on Facebook,” Murphy said.
Last month, Bianco shared a video message calling Gov. Gavin Newsom’s efforts to contain the pandemic with business closures and stay-home orders “flat out ridiculous.”
He vowed not to enforce any of the state’s new restrictions, which he believed were based on “unbelievably faulty” metrics.
Riverside County remain in the state’s most restrictive tier of reopening, the purple tier, where risk of virus transmission is considered widespread.
More than 1 in 10 county residents has tested positive for the virus since the pandemic began, and 3,003 people had succumbed to the illness as of Wednesday.
Though state data shows California is emerging from the worst of the monthslong virus surge that propelled a spike in deaths across the holidays, COVID-19 spread remains rampant in Southern California.
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