Police are sharing the worst excuses from lockdown rule breakers

Fishing trips, long-distance support bubbles, moving a beehive, a break from the wife and kids, coronamoaners, ‘I’ve tested every week” – the list of excuses police are confronted with is getting longer and weirder.

This weekend saw police attended a Covid-breaching party held in the Chaddlewood area of Plympton and resulted in 16 people – including a dental nurse – fined £800 each.

The large gathering left police “lost for words” as they had all gathered in the living room of the property in Spindle Crescent, “all drinking, smoking cannabis and doing NOS [nitrous oxide]”.

However, their excuses were the icing on the cake for officers, who dished out £12,800 worth of fines.

Police stated the excuses included: “I know what we did was wrong but we’re in our 20s and we just want to enjoy ourselves.’

File image of police carrying out patrols
(Image: PA)

”Covid is a myth. I don’t believe in it. It’s the government controlling us.’

“‘I get tested every week anyway, I’m a dental nurse.'”

Last year saw Covidiots fined and some of the more violent ones even jailed for their behaviour, most of which was aimed at emergency service workers like police and paramedics who were tasked with either safeguarding the NHS by ensuring people abide by the rules, or actually safeguarding people by caring for them.

One family drove all the way from London during the night to enjoy a fishing trip in Devon.

Suffice to say, this did not go down well with Devon and Cornwall Police, who kicked them out of the county and slapped them with fines.

Another driver was reported for driving across the county to pick up a second hand boat they had just bought – but fell foul after their vehicle broke down near Bodmin.

One officer from the Alliance roads Policing team revealed that while manning a motorcycle checkpoint in Cullompton he stopped two people. One explained they were taking a beehive to a field while the other claimed they were taking a PlayStation console to a friend’s house.

Project Servator officers and MoD Police spoke with motorists during the team’s deployment to Albert Road
(Image: Carl Eve)

Another motorist, caught on a 170-mile road trip, was stopped near Launceston, claimed he’d driven his BMW “to have a break from the wife and three kids”.

Tavistock Police tweeted out their incredulity after catching two people who decided it would be a good idea “just to have a drive” around the moors.

Meanwhile, conspiracy theorists tactlessly decided posting their Covidiocy on social media was not enough, placing their leaflets decrying the pandemic on cars at Derriford Hospital multi-storey car park.

They claimed the threat of the virus had been exaggerated as part of a plot to restrict liberties and to generate profits for drug companies making a vaccine.

The leaflets said that the thousands of deaths suffered this year, after taking into account deaths through flu and respiratory conditions, were “not serious”.

They also said that the masks were not effective in preventing the spread of the disease – and it is all part of the “coercion plan”.

But the hospital worker who found a leaflet on his car in the multi-storey called the claims “utter b*****s”.

Sgt Dan Box, neighbourhood team leader for the north and east sector of Plymouth said the majority of the responses officer’s heard when attending suspected Covid-19 breaches surrounded people’s ignorance of the rules.

He said: “We’ve had calls where it turns out to be breaches out of ignorance. You’ll have grandparents visiting one set of grandchildren on a Monday and then the next day they’re visiting another set of grandchildren.

Police say a key part of the Project Servator process is community engagement and reassurance
(Image: Carl Eve)

“The main issue is their understanding of support bubbles.

“We have incidents where neighbours will sometimes see grandparents visiting the same grandchildren so to them it appears like there’s lots of visits.

“It understandably rubs people up the wrong way, but when turn up they often find it is legitimate.

“Then again, we get some cases where it’s clear the person is lying or acting out of stupidity, claiming they weren’t aware of the rules.

“And then we got the ‘covid’s not real’ people as well as they ‘I won’t get it because I’m young’.

Officers from the Covid-patrols have encountered kids and teens who claim they ‘can’t’ get it. When you try to explain they could get it and be a carrier, they don’t always understand. That’s how we get super-spreaders.

“One of my colleagues dealt with the guy who drove from London to visit his girlfriend, claiming that because she was his partner, she was in his ‘bubble’.

“Then there was the guy who had travelled to Wales and then back again, saying it was a recreational journey for his mental health.

“I do think there’s a lot of people who legitimately do not understand some of rules, especially around bubbles. Then there are definitely others who try to manipulate their Covid-breach to fit the guidelines.

“We’ve encountered people who are just trying their luck – they’re not daft, they know exactly what they’re doing and they know they’re breaching the guidelines.

“People need to take it much more seriously. We need that last push to keep to the guidelines”.

Police at the scene of Waterloo Yard flats in Valletort Place, Stonehouse
(Image: Matt Gilley/PlymouthLive)

Government guidelines on ‘bubbles’:

What a support bubble is

A support bubble is a support network which links 2 households. You have to meet certain eligibility rules to form a support bubble. This means not everyone will be able to form a support bubble.

Once you’re in a support bubble, you can think of yourself as being in one ‘household’. It means you can have close contact with the other household in your bubble as if they were members of your own household. This means you do not need to maintain social distance with people in your support bubble.

You should continue to follow social distancing guidance with people outside of your household or support bubble. This is critical to keeping you, your family and friends as safe as possible.

If you form a support bubble, it is best if this is with a household who live locally. This will help prevent the virus spreading from an area where more people are infected.

Who can make a support bubble

Not everybody can form a support bubble. However, on 2 December the rules changed to widen eligibility for forming one.

You can form a support bubble with another household of any size if:

  • you live by yourself – even if carers visit you to provide support
  • you are the only adult in your household who does not need continuous care as a result of a disability
  • your household includes a child who is under the age of one or was under that age on 2 December 2020
  • your household includes a child with a disability who requires continuous care and is under the age of 5, or was under that age on 2 December 2020
  • you are aged 16 or 17 living with others of the same age and without any adults
  • you are a single adult living with one or more children who are under the age of 18 or were under that age on 12 June 2020

You should not form a support bubble with a household that is part of another support bubble.

Meeting other people

It is against the law to meet socially with family or friends unless they are part of your household or support bubble. You cannot leave home for recreational or leisure purposes (such as for a picnic or a social meeting).

Meeting others

You cannot leave your home to meet socially with anyone you do not live with or are not in a support bubble with (if you are legally permitted to form one).

You may exercise on your own, with one other person, or with your household or support bubble. This should be limited to once per day, and you should not travel outside your local area.

You cannot meet other people you do not live with, or have not formed a support bubble with, unless for a permitted reason.

Stay 2 metres apart from anyone not in your household or support bubble.

Meeting others and care

You can leave home:

  • to visit people in your support bubble ( if you are legally permitted to form one)
  • to provide informal childcare for children under 14 as part of a childcare bubble (for example, to enable parents to work, not to enable social contact between adults)
  • to provide care for disabled or vulnerable people
  • to provide emergency assistance
  • to attend a support group (of up to 15 people)
  • for respite care where that care is being provided to a vulnerable person or a person with a disability, or is a short break in respect of a looked-after child.

Cornwall Live