In an exclusive report published by the Daily Mail, an elderly man in Australia appeared to collapse to the ground after being arrested by police officers for “failing to wear a face mask” while walking outdoors in a park.
“A man is demanding answers after sharing distressing footage of his elderly dad collapsing and suffering spasms as he’s arrested for failing to wear a face mask in public,” the Daily Mail reported. “The stomach-churning incident was filmed on Monday morning in Brisbane’s Botanic Gardens after Queensland’s lockdown was extended to stem the spread of Covid in the community.”
“According to the man’s son, who shared the footage online, he suffers from a medical condition which causes him breathing difficulties and heart problems,” the report continued. “During the arrest, he fell to the floor and started to spasm, gasping for air and flailing as he tried to reach for his backpack – which contained his medication.”
According to the report, four police officers questioned the man. They then proceeded to arrest him and lead him away from the park “for failing to answer their questions ‘reasonably.’”
His partner “repeatedly told officers that the man had an exemption and tried to provide personal details.”
“According to the man’s son, he is required to carry medication with him at all times and had a legitimate medical exemption from wearing the face mask,” the Daily Mail added, with the son saying his father “was interrogated as to why he was there, what he was doing and why he wasn’t wearing a mask… he answered all of these questions.”
“Do you believe me now you pr***s?” the man’s partner asked the officers as he fell to the ground. She then told an officer to give her space to administer his medication.
“Here, let me do it darling… Absolutely disgraceful,” she said.
“He did not do anything illegal, he did not retaliate in a violent manner. He was conducting himself peacefully and not looking for trouble,” the man’s son argued. “This hurt me more than anything I’ve experienced… Seeing my father get arrested as he was having a seizure.”
Police officials told Daily Mail Australia that investigations are ongoing regarding the incident.
“On August 2, police patrolling in the Botanical Gardens arrested a man for failing to comply with directions under the Public Health Act 2005 (Qld),” a spokesperson said.
“During the arrest, the man appeared to collapse.”
“The Queensland Ambulance Service was requested, attended and did not identify a medical issue however the man was transported to hospital as a precaution,” the spokesperson added. “As police had discontinued the arrest at that time, investigations are continuing into any possible offenses committed on that day.”
“Australia’s Queensland state on Monday extended a COVID-19 lockdown in Brisbane, while soldiers began patrolling Sydney to enforce stay-at-home rules as Australia struggles to stop the highly contagious Delta variant of the coronavirus spreading,” Reuters reported on Wednesday.
“It’s starting to become clear that the initial lockdown will be insufficient for the outbreak,” Queensland state Deputy Premier Steven Miles said.