Staffordshire’s top cop fears families may need ‘tighter’ coronavirus rules



Staffordshire’s top cop fears coronavirus rules may need tightening in order to make families comply with the guidance.

It comes after Health Secretary Matt Hancock defended officers who have been criticised for being too quick to fine people for coronavirus breaches.

Officers across the nation came under fire after two friends were fined for travelling five miles to a nearby beauty spot and a woman was seen approached by police for sitting on a bench in public.

Under the current coronavirus restrictions families are being told to stay at home unless travelling for essential shopping, work, or their one daily exercise which should be done locally.

The National Police Chiefs Council wrote to Derbyshire Police saying that while the rules ‘strongly urge’ families to remain in their local area, they cannot be punished for driving further afield to exercise.

But Staffordshire Police Chief Constable Gareth Morgan now fears tighter rules may be required to stem the spread of Covid-19.

Taking to social media he said: “The approach at Staffordshire Police remains focused and consistent on encouraging the public to comply, but enforcing where necessary.

“Staying at home is vital and saves lives.

“I think too many people are looking for exemptions and exceptions. There may be a case for tighter regulations to ensure clarity.”

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Yesterday Chief Inspector Mark Thorley, commander of the Staffordshire Moorlands, also took to social media to say officers would take a ‘common sense’ approach to policing the rules.

In the first lockdown in March a number of people were caught breaking the laws to travel to the Roaches, near Leek, including a group of campers seen pitched at the site.





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