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Paddleboarder Arrested In Malibu For Refusing To Exit Water, Scientist Says Beaches Are Dangerous Right Now

MALIBU (CBSLA) – A paddleboarder was arrested Thursday afternoon near the Malibu Pier for ignoring orders from lifeguards to get out of the water.

Paddleboarder Arrested In Malibu For Refusing To Exit Water
A paddleboarder near the Malibu Pier is confronted by Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department Harbor Patrol deputies after refusing get out of the water. April 2, 2020. (LASD)

According to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, the unidentified man spent 30 to 40 minutes paddling in the ocean waters off Malibu Beach after refusing to heed orders from L.A. County lifeguards to go ashore.

Finally, LASD Harbor Patrol brought in a boat, at which point the paddleboarder voluntarily swam in and was taken into custody.

He was arrested on misdemeanor charges of disobeying a lifeguard. He was booked and released from the Malibu/Lost Hills Sheriff's Station with orders to appear in court. It's unclear what kind of fine he faces.

Video posted to Instagram shows the man paddling away from authorities as they gave chase.

Nearly all beaches along the Southern California coast have been closed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

On March 25, Malibu closed its famous pier and all the restaurants that sit along it. Since March 27, all L.A. County-owned beaches have been closed, including beach bathrooms, piers, promenades, and beach bike paths. The Santa Monica Pier has been shuttered since mid-March.

All parking lots at state beaches and parks – including nine in L.A. County – have been closed.

Kim Prather, a leading atmospheric chemist at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, said the beaches are so dangerous right now that she wouldn't even go in the water for $1 million.

"The ocean churns up all kinds of particulate and microscopic pathogens, and every time the ocean sneezes with a big wave or two, it sprays these particles into the air," Prather said in a statement.

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