Devon and Cornwall Police have issued a plea to the public to “follow the spirit of the Government’s coronavirus guidance, not just the letter of the law” after they received 885 reports of Covid-related breaches since the start of lockdown.
They’ve revealed that from January 5 to January 10, 699 of the breaches were worthy of intervention from officers using the “3’Es” of Engagement, Explain and Encourage the following of the rules.
36 fixed penalty notices were issued including nine fines for outdoor gatherings, four for leaving a house without reasonable excuse and 15 for indoor gatherings against the coronavirus lockdown rules.
In addition to the interventions, Devon and Cornwall Police have also revealed that their high visibility patrols across the force area have resulted in over 800 stop-checks and a dozen fixed-penalty notices being issued to motorists for coronavirus related breaches.
It was also revealed that road traffic collisions and crime had reduced since the lockdown started, with crime down eleven per cent compared to the pre-lockdown figure.
A spokesperson for Devon and Cornwall Police said: “Since the start of the national lockdown on Tuesday 5 January through to Sunday 10 January, we have received in the region of 885 Covid-related reports of which 699 were deemed suitable for 3Es action (Engage, Explain and Encourage).
“Thirty-six fixed penalty notices have been issued, this includes nine for outdoor gatherings, four for leaving the house without reasonable excuse and for 15 indoor gatherings.
“We have undertaken high-visibility patrols across the force which has resulted in over 800 stop-checks and around a dozen fixed penalty notices being issued.
“Our roads do appear to be quieter as shown by the notable reduction in road traffic collisions since lockdown, and crime is down around 11 per cent compared to pre-lockdown figures. 999 calls are down around 10 per cent but calls and contact to our 101 services are up around 23 per cent compared to the week prior to lockdown.”
The spokesperson also added that while the majority of people were complying with the regulations, those who don’t face enforcement action which could include fines“Devon and Cornwall Police operate over the largest geographical force in the country and we cannot be everywhere at once, so it is vital that all are doing their part in adhering to the rules of lockdown as this will ultimately save lives.
“The figures show the vast majority of communities are complying with the regulations and we will always look to respond to all calls where non-compliance is being reported.
“We continue with a 4Es approach and would reiterate that personal responsibility from all of our communities remains critical. We ask our communities to follow the spirit of the Government’s COVID-19 guidance, not just the letter of the law.”