Benton County mayor: ‘Main Street looks like it’s the strip on Daytona Beach at spring break’

Coronavirus

BENTON COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) — The mayor of Benton County says many of his residents “are simply in denial” when it comes to the seriousness of COVID-19.

In a video posted to his Facebook page Wednesday, Mayor Brett Lashlee expressed concerns over the reaction to the pandemic from residents, businesses and state leaders.

“I don’t know, maybe I’m not having a good day, but I’m not liking what I’m seeing when I’m running around the community and kind of observing things,” the mayor said.

Lashlee explained, “there are times that Main Street looks like it’s the strip on Daytona Beach at Spring Break.”

“I believe locally there’s a lot of our citizens that are simply in denial,” he added.

After observing multiple businesses in Benton County over the weekend and earlier this week, Mayor Lashlee said, “I will say, I saw masks. I saw gloves. I saw people with the little hangers of sanitizer on their belt loops and things, but you know who I saw this from? I saw this from citizens, the customers. I did not see this on the managers walking around in the store. I did not see this on the employees of those stores.”

The mayor also explained he wanted to see more “tough talk out of Tennessee leaders” when it comes to the coronavirus.

As of Wednesday afternoon, there were four confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Benton County. A total of 35 people in the county had been tested for the virus, according to data from the Tennessee Department of Health.

COVID-19 in Tennessee

(This reflects what the TDH is reporting each day at 2 p.m. CST )

Coronavirus-related deaths in Tennessee

County# of Deaths
Anderson1
Bedford2
Benton1
Blount3
Bradley1
Campbell1
Carroll1
Carter1
Cumberland1
Davidson25
Fayette1
Franklin1
Gibson1
Greene2
Grundy1
Hamblen2
Hamilton13
Hawkins2
Haywood1
Humphreys1
Knox5
Macon3
Madison1
Marion1
Marshall1
McMinn1
Monroe1
Montgomery2
Obion1
Putnam5
Rutherford11
Sevier1
Shelby44
Smith1
Sullivan1
Sumner37
Trousdale1
Williamson9
Wilson4
Out of state3
Total Deaths (as of 4/29/20)195

Stay with News 2 for continuing coverage of the COVID-19 Pandemic.

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