Elizabeth Linscott and Isaiah Linscott are a Kentucky couple who were placed on house arrest and fitted with ankle monitors on July 16 after she tested positive for the COVID-19 coronavirus and they both refused to sign quarantine orders, WAVE reports. The husband and wife were issued a court order by a Hardin County judge requiring them to stay within 200 feet of their Radcliff home, they told the news station. The couple had been asked to sign a self-isolation and controlled movement agreed order by the Lincoln Trail District Health Department after Elizabeth Linscott’s positive test, but they declined, according to court documents.
Elizabeth Linscott, 23, took the test because she wanted to go visit her parents grandparents in Michigan, she told WAVE. She told the news station she tested positive, but did not show any symptoms. The health department contacted her after the test, she said, and asked her to sign documents agreeing to not travel anywhere without notifying them first. She said she declined. She told the news station she was worried that if she developed symptoms, she would have to wait for approval to go to a hospital. A few days after refusing to sign the documents, she said police and health officials came to her home while she, her husband and their 8-month-old daughter were home.
“I open up the door and there’s like eight different people,” Isaiah Linscott, also 23, told WAVE. “Five different cars and I’m like ‘what the heck’s going on?’ This guy’s in a suit with a mask, it’s the health department guy and he has three different papers for us. For me, her and my daughter.” Elizabeth Linscott told the news station, “We didn’t rob a store, we didn’t steal something, we didn’t hit and run, we didn’t do anything wrong.” The Linscotts, who told the news station they planned to get an attorney, did not respond to a request for comment from Heavy. The couple has been married since 207. It is not clear if they have hired representation.
Here’s what you need to know about Elizabeth and Isaiah Linscott:
1. Elizabeth Linscott Said in a Written Response to the Health Department’s Order, ‘There Is No Pandemic & With a Survival Rate of 99.9998%, I’m Fine’ & Said She Would Avoid the Elderly, ‘Stay Home, Get Rest, Get Medicine & Get Better’
The Hardin County Sheriff’s Office issued a statement confirming, without naming the Linscotts, that deputies had served “notices and orders to isolate and quarantine,” on July 16, according to a July 20 Facebook post by the agency. The sheriff’s office said it did not initiate the petition to isolate anyone and has not done so. The sheriff’s office said the petition was filed by the local health department and issued by a judge.
“On Thursday, July 16, 2020, the Hardin County Sheriff delivered Notices of Orders to Isolate and Quarantine as directed by the court, just as we deliver thousands of court notices each month as part of our duties at the sheriff’s office,” the post said. “The Hardin County Sheriff’s Office did not install location monitoring devices on anyone in Hardin County. We have no open cases, nor have we had any cases, involving the enforcement of a failure to isolate for positive COVID-19 testing.”
The Hardin County Court provided records from the Linscotts’ case to Snopes, showing a judge issued the self-isolation order on July 16 to Elizabeth and Isaiah Linscott, and their daughter. The documents state that Elizabeth Linscott tested positive for COVID-19 on July 11 and attended a church that has had 25 positive tests.
Elizabeth Linscott told The News Enterprise she refused the order because, “I could not comply to having to call the public health department prior if I had an emergency or I had to go pick something up for my child or myself as a necessity and could not wait.” But court documents obtained by Snopes and The News Enterprise show she used different reasoning in her written response to the health department’s order. She wrote:
I will do my best to stay at home, as I do every other time I get sick. But I cannot comply to having to call the public health department everytime that I need to go out and do something. It’s my right and freedoms to go where I please and not have to answer to anyone for it. There is no pandemic and with a survival rate of 99.9998%, I’m fine. I will continue to avoid the elderly, just like PRIOR guidelines state, try to stay home, get rest, get medicine, and get better, I decline.
Elizabeth Linscott did not mention her concern about having to get permission to go to a hospital or doctor or to pick up medicine in her response to the health department’s order.
2. Elizabeth Linscott, a Michigan Native, Shared an Instagram Meme Saying ‘If You’re Mad I’m Not Wearing a Mask Wait Until You Find Out I’m Not Getting the Vaccine Either,’ Along With QAnon & Pizzagate Memes
Elizabeth Callison Linscott is originally from Michigan. She and her husband have been married since October 2017, according to her Facebook profile. She says on her page she is a “wife & mama,” and states she believes in “GOD | GUNS | TRUMP 🇺🇸.”
Before locking down her social media pages, Linscott shared memes related to the debunked QAnon, Pizzagate and Wayfair sex trafficking conspiracy theories. Linscott also shared a meme that said, “If you’re mad I’m not wearing a mask wait until you find out I’m not getting the vaccine either.”
She also encouraged family members who don’t agree with her to remove her as a friend on Facebook. Linscott gave birth to the couple’s first child, a daughter, in October 2019.
On the Fourth of July, she posted a photo of a Trump campaign flag and a T-shirt reading, “Elect Trump 2020. Make Liberals Cry Again.” She wrote in the caption, “🇺🇸🇺🇸HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY 🇺🇸🇺🇸THANKS TO OUR FOREFATHERS FOR OUR FREEDOMS TODAY AND ALL THE MEN AND WOMEN WHO HAVE DIED FIGHTING, ARE STILL ALIVE TODAY, FOR THIS GREAT COUNTRY AND THANK YOU PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP FOR CONTINUING FIGHTING FOR THE AMERICAN PEOPLE AND OUR FREEDOMS! #God #guns #trump2020 swipe to see what my trump shirt says 😝🇺🇸 #maga2020.”
3. Isaiah Linscott, a Kentucky Native Who Has Worked at His Father’s Church, Had Anti-Mask & Conspiracy Theory Posts on His Facebook Page
Isaiah Linscott is a native of Radcliff, Kentucky, according to his Facebook page, where he states in his bio section, “GOD GUNS AND TRUMP.” Linscott said on his Facebook page he graduated from North Hardin High School and worked at Abundant Living Church, where his father, Terry Linscott, is the church’s pastor. The church was founded by Isaiah Linscott’s grandparents.
According to The News Enterprise, the church has had more than 25 positive cases. Elizabeth Linscott said she last attended the church on July 1, according to the newspaper.
“Yes, there have been confirmed cases,” she told the newspaper. “Nobody was forced to go, everybody understood that it is a choice to go just like it is a choice to go to Walmart, to go to Target, etc. You will be exposed to anything anywhere you go and every confirmed case has recovered.”
Before making his Facebook page mostly private, Isaiah Linscott showcased several posts about coronavirus and politics, including conspiracy theories about COVID-19, Democratic politicians and George Floyd’s death. He shared a meme in May that stated, “Its ridiculous we’re shutting everything down for a virus that has a lower kill rate than testifying against Hillary Clinton.” He also shared a post in May falsely claiming Democrats are “literally giddy” about the coronavirus pandemic.
Also in May, he shared a link to a debunked article falsely claiming face masks pose a serious risk to healthy people.
Another meme he shared said, “Terrified of Corona? Then stay in your house…but stop demanding your neighbors live in the same fear you chose for yourself.” In a prophetic post, he shared a message about quarantine, that said, “stop calling it ‘quarantine.’ Quarantine is for the sick. This is house arrest. Stop calling it ‘social distancing.’ There is nothing social about forced isolation. … Stop saying this is for the ‘Greater Good.’ No good can come from the government picking and choosing who is essential and who isn’t. (Think Nazi Germany). Every single person and every single business is essential.”
4. Republican Senator Rand Paul Called Kentucky’s Governor ‘Drunk With Power’ in Reaction to the Linscotts’ Story
The Linscotts have received support on social media from Kentucky Senator Rand Paul. The Republican, who was himself diagnosed with COVID-19 in March 2020, and created controversy for his actions while awaiting his test results, has been outspoken against coronavirus mandates and what he sees as overreach by state and local officials.
Paul posted on Twitter a message directed at Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear, a Democrat, on July 21, along with a link to a Fox News article about the Linscotts. Paul wrote, “To DWP (drunk with power) @AndyBeshearKY — it’s more important you submit to his will & sign a statement of submission than to actually quarantine. Hardin Co couple agreed to isolate but would not agree to ask permission to seek ER care. Shame on you Gov.”
Isaiah Linscott previously criticized Beshear on Facebook. He posted a link to a Change.org petition in April calling for Beshear to be impeached. The petition, signed by more than 13,000 other people, said Beshear violated the constitution through his coronavirus orders.
But it is the local health department and the county court, not Beshear, with the authority to require the Linscotts to stay home after the positive coronavirus test, according to state law. Snopes, in looking into whether there was reason for the couple to be placed on house arrest, cited Title 902, Chapter 2, Section 50 of the Kentucky Administrative Regulations:
Whenever any person has been implicated as a possible reservoir or possible source of infection of any communicable disease, the local health department or the Cabinet for Human Resources shall employ such measures as are necessary to secure adequate isolation, restriction of employment or other control procedures that may be necessary to insure cessation of transmission of infection.
Chapter 212, Section 245(6) of the Kentucky Revised Statutes also applies, according to Snopes. It says county, city-county and district health departments have the authority to:
[…] Issue written orders directed to the owner or occupant of any property, or to any person, firm, or corporation whatever, commanding, within the time and manner specified in the order, compliance with applicable public health laws of this state and all regulations of the Cabinet for Health and Family Services or the county board of health. Notwithstanding the provisions of this section and KRS 212.210, any health officer may institute and maintain mandatory or prohibitory injunction proceedings in the appropriate Circuit Courts of this state to abate nuisances that are or may be a menace to the health of the people of the state or community, and to compel compliance with the public health laws of this state and the rules and regulations of the Cabinet for Health and Family Services and the county board of health and the orders described in this section or in KRS 212.210.
5. Another Kentucky Woman Was Arrested After She Broke a Quarantine Order to Go to a Grocery Store & a Kentucky Man Was Guarded by a Police Officer When He Refused to Isolate Himself
The Linscotts are not the first Kentuckians to run afoul of the state’s coronavirus orders. In April, 37-year-old Kendra Burnett was arrested at a Kroger grocery store after authorities said she refused a court order to self quarantine after testing positive for COVID-19, The Louisville Courier-Journal reported. Burnett, who was wearing an ankle monitor, had previously refused to follow the isolation order two other times, the newspaper reported.
Dave Langdon, a spokesperson for the Louisville-area health department, told The Courier Journal, “Despite a court order to self-quarantine and being fitted with an ankle bracelet, a COVID-19 infected individual left quarantine on Monday morning. Louisville Metro Department of Corrections received an alert that the individual had left her quarantine area, and then notified MetroSafe, which dispatched LMPD to the scene pinpointed by the alert.”
Like the Linscotts, public health officials said Burnett initially refused to sign a quarantine order, the newspaper reported. They also said she did not answer calls from authorities, so the health department obtained a judge’s order to require her to wear an electronic monitor. She was charged with five counts of wanton endangerment, which is a felony, along with criminal mischief and contempt of court after her arrest at Kroger, court records show. The case against Burnett is still pending.
In March, a 53-year-old Nelson County, Kentucky, was placed under quarantine at his home and the sheriff’s office stationed an officer outside to guard him, according to The Courier-Journal. The man checked himself out of a hospital after testing positive for COVID-19 and initially said he wouldn’t stay at home, the newspaper reported. Nelson County Sheriff Ramon Pineiroa told the newspaper the man, who was not publicly identified, later agreed to stay home, but a deputy was posted at the home to ensure he complied.
As of July 21, Kentucky has had more than 24,000 positive coronavirus tests out of nearly 550,000 total tests, according to the Kentucky public health website. The state has had 674 COVID-19 deaths, according to the state’s website.
During a July 21 press conference, Beshear told reporters, “There is no safe region in Kentucky anymore.” Beshear called the situation in his state “serious” and “escalating.” Beshear recently put in place several emergency orders, including a public mask mandate and a limit of 10 people at social gatherings. Beshear told reporters, “You can go from very few cases to being overwhelmed almost immediately. And when you think about when we put a restriction in place – it’s going to take almost two weeks to start stemming the tide.”