(WWJ) A Dearborn business claims it was unjustly fined for defying the state's new pandemic restrictions.
Last Friday, a customer was waiting inside Donutville USA on Ford Road while her husband was using the bathroom -- when police came in and gave the shop owner a citation for violating Michigan's three-week ban on in-person dining.
Manager Danny, who did not provide his last name, says the shop has hired an attorney to fight the violation.
"We are going to stay open, serving people, carryout, whatever," Danny told WWJ's Charlie Langton. "We like people to get coffee from us, we like serving donuts all the time. That's how we are."
"I mean (the dine-in ban) is not gonna stop us from serving," he said.
A GoFundMe account set up to cover the shop's legal fees has raised more than $4,600 by midday Tuesday.
As message on the fundraiser page reads: "This fundraiser is to help cover the legal fees of Donutville USA, a 54 year old family business, who were fined with a criminal misdemeanor for allowing a customer to sit down while waiting for their spouse to use the restroom. They have decided to fight the ticket and have hired David Kallman. The fine and attorneys fees may reach upwards of $10,000,"
This comes during a "three-week pause" in Michigan, initiated by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services in response to a surge in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations. Through Dec. 8, restaurants and bars are ordered to closed for indoor service. Casinos, movie theaters, bowling alleys and ice rinks are also shut down in an effort to curtail the spread of the virus.