A former client of Longley at his downtown Denver clinic, who asked to be referred to as Maria, is one of the people who helped identify Longley. She told Vice that she met him at a CrossFit gym in 2016.
She later signed up to chiropractic sessions with him and told the media outlet that Longley spoke to her about Jeffrey Epstein, Hillary Clinton, and the Obamas – popular boogeymen in the QAnon world.
“He was effectively trying to red pill me,” Maria said.
Longley has also been identified via content he shared on his QAnon accounts. Three individuals, who were granted anonymity, told Vice that a profile picture of him used on his InevitableET Twitter account and an Instagram video of him reciting the QAnon Oath match the image of Longley.
A Vice review of content posted on his InevitableET pages shows that Longley has embraced many far-right views for at least four years. He has supported election fraud myths, COVID-19 denial, and the popular QAnon lie that Democratic politicians are part of a shadowy cabal of pedophiles, Vice said.
Much of the conspiracy theorist’s content has also focused on vicious antisemitism, Gilbert reported. He has taken part in the “Blue the Jew” movement, where antisemites photoshop notable Jews blue to identify them, Vice added.
He has also claimed in Instagram posts that Jews are attempting to enslave the world and has endorsed material from the “Protocols of the Elders of Zion” – an infamous antisemitic conspiracy theory from the early 20th century.
In 2019, Vice reported, Longley achieved any QAnon influencer’s dream; he was retweeted by then-President Donald Trump. In that tweet, he falsely claimed that “Trump has not been impeached.”
But, following the January 6 insurrection, his Twitter account was suspended.
His banishment led him to establish the “We The Media” Telegram channel – one of the most popular forums for hardcore adherents of the discredited QAnon movement. It now has over 200,000 subscribers.
Longley’s clout in the QAnon world has also provided him with an opportunity to speak at an upcoming conference in Dallas, Texas.
Officials in Colorado and North Carolina are pausing distribution of the Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine after a few people experienced minor adverse reactions this week.
As The Denver Post reported Wednesday, 11 people experienced reactions after receiving the J&J shot at a mass-vaccination clinic in Commerce City, just north of Denver. With over 1,700 having being given the vaccine that day, that comes out to less than 1%.
On Thursday, Peter Banko, CEO of Centura Health, which was distributing the vaccines, said the company would pause while public health officials investigate whether there is an issue with the batch, The Post’s Meg Wingerter reported.
There were no issues earlier in the week, Wingerter noted.
In North Carolina, public health officials in Wake County reported 14 people – out of more than 2,300 – experienced adverse reactions on Thursday. “Currently the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are analyzing the vaccine lot and expect to issue guidance within the next two hours,” county officials said Thursday evening.
The reactions, while minimal, come after Johnson & Johnson was forced to scrap some 15 million doses due to a manufacturing error at a plant in Baltimore.
In a statement, Johnson & Johnson told Insider it takes any adverse reactions seriously, saying it will “carefully assess the events” and share any findings with the Food and Drug Administration.
“There is no greater priority than the safety and well-being of the people we serve,” the company said.
When Major League Baseball announced it was moving its All-Star Game from Georgia to protest new restrictions on voting, local Republicans and conservative media outlets bemoaned the rise of “woke capital” and created a false equivalence. Colorado, they said – the game’s new home – was really no better when it comes to voting rights.
“I think it’s a little bit laughable,” Paul Teske, dean of Public Affairs at the University of Colorado Denver, told Insider of the comparison. “Colorado is such an easy place to vote.”
Georgia is not so easy, and it will now become more difficult.
Among other things, Georgia’s new elections law, passed by the state’s Republican-led legislature following a campaign by party leaders to paint the 2020 election as fraudulent, curtails the use of mail-in ballots. While before voters had up to six months before an election to request a ballot, they now have 11 weeks, and will have fewer drop boxes to cast their vote.
Crucially, people who vote by mail will also have to provide a driver’s license or other state-issued identification card, similar to the requirement for in-person voting. Previously, poll workers simply checked signatures to make sure they matched those on file – a process that, according to Georgia’s Republican elections officials, uncovered no real fraud.
That, according to GOP Gov. Brain Kemp, is no different than Colorado. In an appearance on Fox News this week, Kemp said he was confused by MLB’s decision to move its All-Star contest to Colorado where, “I’m being told, they also have a photo ID requirement.”
He was told wrong.
What counts as an “ID” in the Rocky Mountains is not the same as in Georgia. According to Colorado’s Secretary of State, acceptable forms of identification include not just those issued by the state or federal government, but those printed by colleges and universities. Don’t have one of those, either? Not a problem: the state also accepts utility bills, bank statements, and paycheck stubs.
In 2020, a super-majority of voters in Colorado cast their ballots by mail – all registered voters receive them automatically, as they have for years prior to the pandemic, with bipartisan support.
“The truth is Colorado’s election model works,” Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold, a Democrat, said in a statement on Tuesday. “[T]he proof is in voter turnout, consistently among the top in the nation,” she said, adding the state is “grateful that MLB is giving us the opportunity to showcase how elections can be.”
Mail-in ballots can also be deposited at any time; as Colorado Public Radio notes, there is one drop box for every 9,400 active registered voters, available 24 hours a day. By contrast, the new law in Georgia actually caps the number of drop boxes for ballots to one per 100,000 voters, while limiting accessibility. It also requires Georgians to provide ID every time they vote absentee, not just when they initially register (the state, previously, compared signatures, as they do in Colorado).
Nevertheless, Kemp’s false claim was provided journalistic cover. Fox News, for example, published a story stating that, “As it turns out, Colorado also requires voters to show identification when voting in person.” The outlet’s Peter Doocy, at a White House briefing, likewise asked Biden spokesperson Jen Psaki if the administration was concerned about the MLB game moving to Colorado, “where voting regulations are very similar to Georgia.”
Psaki rebutted the comparison. “It’s important to remember the context here,” she added. “The Georgia bill is built on a lie.”
Indeed, the new Georgia law comes not after evidence of voter fraud – the state’s Republican elections officials uncovered none that would alter the outcome of the 2020 election – but a concerted effort by a former president and other GOP politicians to invalidate ballots cast for Democrats.
“It’s just abundantly clear, from the outside looking in, that they had some close elections but they lost,” Teske said, “and so the Republican legislature is looking to restrict voting in ways that they think will help them win elections in the future.”
“That is not a great way to have a democracy,” he added.
Colorado offers an ideal year-round nature-filled vacation. The Rocky Mountains make it easy to ski, snowboard, or snowshoe in winter or hike during warmer weather. There’s also gorgeous fall foliage, and plenty of buzzy restaurants and world-class art in cities like Denver.
I’ve been spending much of the pandemic savoring Colorado’s wide-open, natural surroundings and I’m hardly alone. There are no COVID restrictions to visit Colorado and some of the best vacation rentals are being booked months in advance.
If you’re considering a road trip to the Rockies or getting a head start on planning a future trip, it’s never too early to consider your lodging. Here’s where to start.
Browse all the best Airbnb homes in Colorado below, or jump directly to a specific area here:
Designed and built by Tumbleweed Tiny House Company, one of the leading tiny home companies, this all-pine-wood property is located in an RV and cabin site in Fairplay, the mining town made famous by the show South Park. In fact, not far from the rental is an open-air museum dedicated to the show. Breckenridge is also just a 30-minute drive away.
Like most tiny homes, this one is chicly designed to make the most out of its limited size via clever storage spaces and a loft bedroom with a Queen-size bed. There’s also a bench that serves as the unit’s main seating area that can be expanded into a twin bed for additional sleeping space. Heat, air-conditioning, and a decent kitchen with an induction stove are included as is access to community hot tubs (seasonal from Memorial Day to Labor Day).
Off-site, outdoorsy pursuits from hiking to fishing are never too far away. And considering the region’s history as a mining town, visitors can also try their hand at gold-panning.
This tiny home has plenty of open dates over the next few months, until the fall.
Despite its smaller square footage, this thoughtfully decorated tiny carriage house packs in a lot of personality. Located just outside Colorado Springs’ newly blooming downtown core, this is a convenient accommodation choice if you’re looking to experience the region’s natural attractions such as Garden of the Gods and Pikes Peak.
The “bedroom” of this studio is actually a sleeper loft accessed by a pipe ladder, which could potentially pose some mobility concerns. The main floor of the unit is nicely furnished with the original carriage-house door from the 1900s, faux fur couch throws, quirky framed artwork, and a midcentury console in the living room. There’s also a fireplace for cozying up during the colder months. The bathroom comes with a tub surrounded by subway tiles and the kitchen is small but has all the necessities, including a mini-fridge stocked with local beers.
The adjacent garden is accessible to guests. There’s also a fire pit, and herbs grown on raised planters are yours for the picking.
This studio has plenty of availability over the next several months beginning at the end of April.
This playfully decorated one-bedroom carriage house, which dates back to the 1800s, is an ideal home base for exploring Colorado’s booming capital city thanks to its central location. Parks, shops, restaurants, and public transportation are all within walking distance.
Despite its historic bones (there are beautiful exposed bricks throughout), this home has been updated with modern elements, including a dishwasher, air conditioning, Netflix, and heated floors (including in the bathroom). Perks like garden access, a hot tub, and a gym (shared with other homes on the property) elevate the experience.
But it’s the quirky interior decor that truly makes this house special. A repurposed dresser is now the bathroom counter, a license plate collage hints back at the property’s previous life as a garage, and wood-frame windows act as a wall that separates the bedroom from the living room.
This property has scattered availability over the next few months with more dates opening up for spring and beyond.
One of Colorado’s most popular Airbnbs, this 1,400-square-foot, two-bedroom cabin is full of relaxing features for a self-contained vacation. Located in a semi-secluded forested pocket of Grant, a Platte Canyon town about an hour away from both Denver and Breckenridge, this home is as tasteful as it is tranquil.
The A-frame construction in vibrant blue hints at the design-forward interiors. But before you even enter the cabin, you might spot the steam sauna on the deck — one of the cabin’s signature amenities. Inside, there’s a midcentury lean to the decor. Furnishings are minimalist, textured, and have enough rustic touches to match the natural landscape outside. There’s a fireplace, memory foam Queen beds, and walk-in showers.
Outside, in addition to the sauna, seasonal add-ons include a grill and hammocks. Wi-Fi can be spotty given the tucked-away location, but there is a cabinet full of board games to keep guests entertained. Or, just hang out in the back deck, looking at the pretty mountain views.
Because of this rental’s popularity, it’s currently booked until late fall, but travelers who like planning ahead can find plenty for the end of the year.
In southwest Colorado, near the border of New Mexico, this rustic-chic two-bedroom cabin is conveniently located right next to Purgatory Ski Resort, a 1,500-acre ski destination popular among locals. In fact, the slopes are so close, guests can watch lift chairs swinging just over the deck. Though it’s not quite a ski-in/ski-out property, other active pursuits can be done right at its doors, including hiking, mountain biking, and snowshoeing.
While the cabin technically has two bedrooms, one is a lofted sleeping area. Interiors toe the line between vintage and rustic, with wood snowshoe wall accessories, pendant lights of exposed bulbs tied to thick knots, and lots of wood treated in a variety of finishes. There are also plenty of windows that provide spectacular views of the surrounding mountains. The cabin’s list of amenities also includes an indoor fireplace, a hot tub, and a cedar sauna.
This cabin has open availability in the coming months.
This newly renovated cabin in Pikes Peak Resort is a marriage of modern luxury and secluded rusticity. The cabin was treated to a recent comprehensive facelift to match the stunning Rocky Mountain views that surround it.
A three-bedroom, two-bathroom hideaway in the middle of Pike National Forest, the cabin is perched along a ridge overlooking a picturesque lake and meadow. The log construction offers up the ultimate in bucolic charm and even the bed frames are constructed with what could be blonde tree trunks and branches. The recent renovation included updating the outdoor deck, the bathrooms, plumbing, and flooring as well as installing a brand-new kitchen and the outdoor hot tub, which is perfect for star-gazing.
Considering the location in a national forest, staying here means quiet and seclusion. But more intrepid thrill seekers won’t have to venture far to find activities like mountain biking, ATV riding, fishing, and snowshoeing.
This cabin has very limited availability in spring, but dates open up starting in June.
For a discreet getaway, consider this red-roof A-frame cabin in the quaint town of Basalt, located 20 miles north of Aspen. It’s the epitome of country charm.
This one-bedroom refuge is nestled along the Frying Pan River on Dallenbach Ranch, a 140-acre expanse that is regularly visited by deer, big-horn sheep, and turkey. In addition to the cabin, guests are given access to a mile-long private section of the water, where catch-and-release fly-fishing for trout is permitted.
The accommodations are thoughtful but modest. There is a Queen-size bed, plus a pullout sofa in the living room, making it an ideal choice for a couple or small family. The cabin comes with a fully-equipped kitchen, an outdoor grill, and Direct TV. While cell reception is available, there is no Wi-Fi here.
This property has scattered availability in the next few months.
Surrounded by a few different lakes (including Columbine Lake and Grand Lake), this four-bedroom woodsy cabin is especially great for larger groups like multi-generational families or pods of friends. Its location near Rocky Mountain National Park makes it an equally ideal booking for outdoors enthusiasts.
There are four bedrooms with different bed configurations to accommodate as many people as possible. One is set up with three Twin beds, while another has a King bed and a Twin bed. The rental also has plenty of lounging spaces, such as two living rooms and large decks on both the front and back sides of the house. You can move the portable fire pit to either side. Convenient amenities like a washer/dryer and indoor fireplaces make long-term stays possible.
The interior decor provides a homey but global feel. The leather pouf ottoman, the Native American-inspired textile throughout, and patterned rugs are complemented with deer antler wall fixtures and minimalist coffee tables.
It’s important to note, however, that while this property is part of a residential community, on-site features like the clubhouse, the horse pasture, and the gazebo can’t be used by renters.
The cabin has plenty of open dates over the next few months.
A ski-in/ski-out penthouse condo in Breckenridge, $608
As one of the country’s top ski resorts, Breckenridge’s accommodation pool fills up quite often. As far as rental options go, this stylish three-bedroom, two-bathroom condo (big enough to fit up to 10 people) is among the most popular, especially because you can ski in and out of the building.
Just yards away from Breck’s downtown core and Quicksilver SuperChair, the location is the biggest selling point. But within its four walls, there’s still a lot to complement a day on the mountain. Handsome decor includes wooden ski wall fixtures, vibrant area rugs, and lots of wood surfaces to reinforce the chalet inspiration. Both bathrooms have tubs, including a larger soaking tub in the master bathroom. There’s also a fireplace in the living room, and outdoor patios that overlook the Rockies.
Recreational amenities like the gym, outdoor fire pit, as well as a sauna and steam room are shared with the building.
This condo has open availability throughout the year, aside from the month of June.
This sprawling, three-bedroom mountain house is a splurge-worthy booking for families or traveling pods. Its location just outside Winter Park’s ski resort means the property is perched over gorgeous views of the trails and boasts easy ski access. For city time, Denver is just 70 miles away.
The striking interiors mean there’s much to enjoy before you even set foot outside. Floor-to-ceiling windows offer round-the-clock visual access to Winter Park’s stunning natural landscapes, not to mention tons of sunlight during the day. The open floor plan is layered with modern furnishings, such as bright, high-end leather couches and top-of-the-line kitchen appliances.
All three bedrooms come with en-suite bathrooms. Plus, the loft area is outfitted with a Queen-size pullout bed, allowing the house for a maximum occupancy of eight guests. Other perks here include outdoor lounges, a hot tub, and grilling equipment. The host also makes himself available to assist with guests’ needs, from shuttle services to grocery delivery.
This property is available starting in April, well into next year.
FAQ: Can I travel to Colorado right now? Here’s what you should know.
How do I book a vacation rental home in Colorado on Airbnb? You may search for homes on Airbnb and filter results based on location, price, date, the number of bedrooms or bathrooms, amenities, and more. Once you’ve found a home you want to book, check for cancellation policies, and review your price in full. For more information on how to book on Airbnb, click here.
What is Airbnb’s cancellation policy? Cancellation policies on Airbnb are different for every home and set by each host. For a full breakdown of Airbnb’s cancellation policies, click here.
Can I travel to Colorado right now? There are currently no COVID restrictions for travel and entering Colorado, but be sure to read up on the most recent rules and regulations, and pay close attention to any restrictions implemented by the individual county you’re interested in visiting. Additionally, there is still no guarantee when it comes to safety with travel right now. We recommend following CDC guidelines including social distancing, wearing a mask, hand washing, and taking extra precautions when traveling to or from a COVID hot spot.
Is it safe to ski right now?
If you’re wondering if skiing during COVID is safe, we talked to experts about the potential risks. And with proper cautions, skiing and snowboarding can be considered relatively low-risk activities. Additionally, all of the Colorado ski areas have introduced new COVID-related safety precautions in coordination with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, so it’s a good idea to check each resort’s specific policies. You may also check Colorado’s statewide COVID-19 updates for additional details on infection rates, testing sites, and the recently renewed mandatory mask-wearing requirement.
Some common changes for the 2020-2021 ski season include mandatory face coverings, social distancing, advance reservations, cashless transactions, and reduced restaurant seating. Many resorts are also limiting capacity, especially for peak dates, so be sure to check your dates and book early.
More of the best mountain getaways
Looking for more cool mountain homes and hotels to book? Here are some of the best places to stay:
As the shooting unfolded, a man named Dean Schiller began livestreaming what he saw on YouTube. The video captures the bodies of victims on the ground and ongoing police activity. At one point in the video, Schiller argues with police who ask him to stop filming.
“I’m a journalist. There’s a lot of people who want to watch this right now,” Schiller says in the video. “I’m willing to risk my life for this.”
Despite depictions of graphic violence, YouTube isn’t removing the video.
“Following the tragic shooting in Boulder, bystander videos of the incident were detected by our teams. Violent content intended to shock or disgust viewers and hate speech are not allowed on YouTube, and as a result we have removed a number of videos for violating our policies,” YouTube spokesperson Elena Hernandez told Insider. “We do allow certain violent or graphic content with sufficient news or documentary context, and so we’ve applied an age restriction to this particular content. We will continue to monitor this rapidly changing situation.”
Schiller’s video, which is published on his ZFG Videography channel, features a prominent warning before it can be viewed:
YouTube has been repeatedly criticized for moderation – or lack thereof – in the past.
Schiller’s video, which the company characterizes as “news or documentary,” had just shy of 750,000 views as of Wednesday morning.
Got a tip? Contact Insider senior correspondent Ben Gilbert via email (firstname.lastname@example.org), or Twitter DM (@realbengilbert). We can keep sources anonymous. Use a non-work device to reach out. PR pitches by email only, please.
Authorities in Boulder, Colorado say they’ll pursue charges after three officers were injured while breaking up a large party that turned violent on Saturday night.
“The City of Boulder condemns the behavior of those who organized and attended the party and will seek the strictest consequences – legal, economic and when relevant, academic – for anyone who engaged in violence or destruction of property. We are grateful that the injured officers are recovering and that no one else was hurt in this dangerous situation,” City Spokesperson Sarah Huntley said in a press release.
In a statement, police said that they responded to a party in University Hill at around 8 p.m. on Saturday. Somewhere between 500 to 800 people were gathered and refused to disperse following announcements from the police.
Police said partiers surrounded an armored rescue vehicle and threw rocks and bottles at officers.
One of the SWAT officers injured was hit in the face but was wearing a mask, and another was hit on the hand, Boulder Police Chief Maris Herold said. All three who were injured are recovering. Herold said police used tear gas to break up the crowd.
Several cars belonging to community members were damaged when rioters jumped on them and at least one car was damaged from being flipped over.
The Daily Camera, a local paper, also reported that some people set off fireworks.
Images and videos from the event show that there was no social distancing and only a few people wearing masks.
The Public Health Department is asking those who attended to get tested for the coronavirus and quarantine for at least 10 days.
“The videos from the party last night are shocking and disturbing, especially considering Governor Polis had just mourned the nearly 6,000 people that died in the last year with COVID in Colorado. This disregard of mask-wearing, disregard of social distancing, and disregard on limits on personal social gatherings clearly in violation of the orders from the state is unacceptable,” Jeff Zayach, BCPH Executive Director said.
No one was arrested on sight, but authorities say they have plenty of video and bodycam footage to help them identify perpetrators. They are also encouraging people to step forward with information.
Boulder County District Attorney Michael Dougherty condemned the “outrageous” actions and called them “dangerous, selfish, and criminal.”
“I hear people refer to it as a party. I don’t regard flipping over a car as a party and I don’t regard people who throw bottles and rocks at firefighters and police as a party,” he said. “Those are criminal acts and will be treated as such.”
The University of Colorado Boulder called the events “unacceptable and irresponsible, particularly in light of the volume of training, communication and enforcement the campus and city have dedicated to ensuring compliance with COVID-19 public health orders.”
“Any student who is found responsible for having engaged in acts of violence toward the law enforcement or other first responders will be removed from CU Boulder and not readmitted,” they said in a statement.
The Federal Aviation Administration said in a statement that the flight had experienced a right engine failure after takeoff. Both the FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating the incident.
A plane suffering engine failure as it flew over Colorado dropped debris across several neighborhoods and narrowly missed a house on Saturday afternoon.
The Broomfield Police Department tweeted a number of images of large, jagged pieces of metal that fell from the sky. One photo showed a massive, circular piece from the plane’s engine atop a home’s doorstep.
Remarkably, no injuries or deaths were immediately reported. The police department said it issued a Code Red to about 1,400 residents in nearby neighborhoods asking them to look out for debris on their property and report it to authorities.
Police also warned residents not to touch or move any debris.
The plane, carrying 231 passengers and 10 crew, landed safely after returning to the Denver International Airport, according to a statement from the Federal Aviation Administration.
United Airlines Flight 328 had just taken off from the Denver airport, en route to Honolulu, Hawaii, when it experienced a right-engine failure after takeoff, the FAA said.
The FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating the incident.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.
Roughly two weeks after the UK announced that a new coronavirus strain was likely responsible for an uptick in cases in the south of England, the US confirmed its first case of that same strain.
The infected person, a man in his 20s in Colorado, had no recent history of travel outside the US, the office of Colorado Gov. Jared Polis said in a statement. Local authorities are working to identify any potential chains of transmission while the man isolates.
UK researchers first detected the new variant three months ago, as a second wave of infections started to mount at the end of the summer. Government leaders have suggested the new variant may be 70% more infectious than its predecessors. Between mid-November and December 9, the variant jumped from being responsible for 28% of London’s new cases to 62%. But there’s no reason to believe it’s more deadly, and experts think existing vaccines will likely still work.
“There is a lot we don’t know about this new COVID-19 variant, but scientists in the United Kingdom are warning the world that it is significantly more contagious,” Gov. Polis said in a statement. “The health and safety of Coloradans is our top priority and we will closely monitor this case, as well as all COVID-19 indicators, very closely. We are working to prevent spread and contain the virus at all levels.”
Countless versions of the coronavirus are circulating, each separated by a handful of tiny changes in its genetic code. The virus typically accumulates two mutations a month, most of which don’t affect its infectiousness or deadliness.
But every so often, “a mutation, or combination of mutations, can arise which confers an advantage to the virus in some way,” Lucy van Dorp, a researcher at University College London’s Genetics Institute, told Business Insider.
That may be the case with the new UK strain, which geneticists have named B.1.1.7. It collected at least 17 mutations at once. Some of the strain’s mutations affect the virus’ spike protein, which it uses to invade cells. That could make it easier for the virus to infect people. Experts believe the strain could have emerged in a patient who was infected for a long time, allowing the virus to mutate in their body, Science magazine reported.
In all likelihood, the variant probably entered the US long before this Colorado case was detected. The US keeps tabs on the genetics of far fewer coronavirus samples than the UK does: Only 51,000 of the 17 million US cases have been genetically sequenced.
“When we start to look for it, we’re going to find it,” he said.
Public health experts say the new strain’s spread is all the more reason to continue wearing masks and social distancing.
“Virus mutations can only accumulate if the virus is allowed to be transmitted,” Nathan Grubaugh, an epidemiologist at the Yale School of Medicine, told Business Insider. “So the longer that we allow uncontrolled transmission to occur, the more chances that the virus will have to adapt to human transmission.”
At least 80 employees have tested positive for COVID-19 at In-N-Out Burger locations in Colorado.
The locations, in Aurora and Colorado Springs, just opened last month.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with our associates and we are hopeful for quick recoveries for each of these affected,” Denny Warnick, vice president of operations at In-N-Out, said in a statement provided to Insider.
Employees who miss work will be paid for missed shifts, the company said.
In-N-Out Burger, the iconic fast-food chain with a cult following, opened its first two locations in Colorado last month. Both quickly became the scenes of COVID-19 outbreaks, with 80 employees now sickened and another 25 suspected of having the disease.
The new location in Colorado Springs was the first to be hit, according to the Department of Public Health & Environment, with an outbreak confirmed as of December 6 – just over two weeks after it began serving burgers and fries on November 20. Sixty employees are confirmed to have COVID-19, with another nine considered “probable” cases.
In-N-Out’s other Colorado location, in Aurora, had a confirmed outbreak as of December 17; at least 20 employees have COVID-19 and 16 others are presumed to be infected.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with our associates and we are hopeful for quick recoveries for each of these affected,” Denny Warnick, vice president of operations at In-N-Out, said in a statement provided to Insider. He noted that employees who test positive for the coronavirus, as well as those who have been in close contact with them, “have been excluded from the workplace.”
All employees have their temperatures checked before each shift.
Kathleen Luppi, a spokesperson for the company, told Insider that it will continue paying those who are unable to work.
“Whether an associate in Colorado is excluded from work because they have tested positive themselves, or because they have been in contact with someone who has, they are being paid for their missed shifts,” she said.