ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. – Several citizens called on St. Louis County to back off in its lawsuit against a defiant chain of local gyms.
House of Pain Gyms, located in Chesterfield and Maryland Heights, ended their 16th day of defiance Tuesday. The gyms reopened May 4, ignoring stay-at-home orders that have remained for gyms in the county.
St. Louis County’s fight to force the gyms to close will go before a federal judge Wednesday afternoon.
In Tuesday’s St. Louis County Council meeting, several citizens asked prosecutors to back off. More than a dozen others argued that gyms should be allowed to open in St. Louis County.
House of Pain Gym members like Joe Zanti said they gym is cleaner and safer than most stores.
Zanti showed Fox 2 how he adds to the safety measures when he drives to Maryland Heights from south St. Louis County to work out.
“I’ve got my own hand sanitizer, which I use after every single use, and I also wipe down on a towel,” he said. “I keep it readily available and I also bought my own disinfectant wipes, so I wipe everything down before I use stuff.”
“These are people that really care that are keeping this place open. They’re wiping everything down, including the free weights. You’ve got a gentleman here who, as a privately-owned business, is working on improving people’s lives.”
County prosecutors have been trying for more than a week to force House of Pain to close. It also wants a judge to force the gym to disclose the names of anyone who’s been in the gym so they can be tested for COVID-19.