When a 38-year-old woman in Melbourne was approached by a constable about wearing a face mask on Monday evening, the woman attacked the officer.
The woman had not been wearing a face mask, and the constable had approached her to request that the woman wear one.
According to the Victoria Police Chief Commissioner Shane Patton, the woman “hit the head – smashed the head – of the police woman several times into a concrete area of the ground.”
The 26-year-old female constable sustained a concussion and was missing a clump of hair by the end of the assault.
The woman was fined $200 and will face court in March of 2021.
Commissioner Patton used this instance as an example of the widespread violent resistance being experienced by Victoria law enforcement. “They’re not wearing a mask. They’re approached and asked the reason why not and then to react like that is just completely over the top.”
The BBC has reported that Melbourne police officers are facing regular harassment for the enforcement of COVID lockdown rules.
Patton stated that Melbourne has “this continual minority of people who are knowingly – not by mistake, but are knowingly – doing the wrong thing and putting people’s lives at risk by doing so.”
“On at least four occasions this week,” Patton explained, “we’ve had to smash the windows of cars and pull people out to provide details,” when those people resisted being questioned by authorities about the current COVID restrictions.
Melbourne is currently under heavy restrictions to prevent the spread of COVID. The wearing of masks is mandatory and residents are only allowed to leave home to shop, exercise, provide medical care, or for essential work purposes. On Sunday, a curfew was put into place between the hours of 8 PM and 5 AM.
All nonessential businesses are closed for six weeks as a result of the state of disaster declared by Australia on Sunday.
“Our members are being tested,” Commissioner Patton said, “at roadblocks, at sites, but they are holding the line and helping the community and they won’t be pushed and shoved by people like this.”
Victoria – the state in which Melbourne resides – has made up over half of Australia’s 18,300 COVID cases. The COVID death toll for the entire nation stands at over 230.