A New Jersey man is facing charges after 30 people gathered on his front lawn to hear him and another man play some of Pink Floyd's greatest hits on acoustic guitars.
John Maldjian, 54, was charged with reckless endangerment, disorderly conduct and two other charges related to violating the state's emergency orders and allegedly hosting a party at his property on Blackpoint Road in Rumson.
Police said that most of the attendees were adults, between ages 40 and 50, and were mostly sitting or standing at least six feet apart.
Officers interrupted the show as Maldjian and another man performed Pink Floyd's "Wish You Were Here," but the men — who were broadcasting the occasion on Facebook Live — reportedly didn't stop playing until an officer approached them.
Rumson Police said via Facebook that people in attendance shouted 'F--- the police' at them and compared them to Nazis as they broke up the gathering, in accordance with Governor Phil Murphy's executive order to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus.
Murphy has railed against 'corona parties' in recent weeks — social gatherings in spite of widespread calls for distancing — and has repeatedly warned residents that people hosting such events would be prosecuted.
"The time for warnings is over, the time to ensure compliance is here," said State Attorney General Gurbir Grewal at a March 23 news conference with Murphy.
Charges related to the audience members are pending, police said.
"The Rumson Police Department takes no enjoyment in ruining anyone's fun!" the department added via Facebook. "However we ALL have a responsibility to take this pandemic SERIOUSLY and adhere to social distancing requirement."
"We also need to be a good role model for our children and be kind and understanding during these times," the statement continued, before warning that if officers need to respond to another corona party, there will be 'zero tolerance.'
Violating social distancing requirements in New Jersey come with penalties of up to six months in jail and fines of up to $1,000.
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