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Stoke-on-Trent City Council secure an injunction against a continued COVID-19 rule breaker

Published: Wednesday, 27th January 2021

A Meir tenant who repeatedly flouted lockdown restrictions by holding parties and having regular household visitors has been hit with a court injunction.

The woman, who lives in a Stoke-on-Trent City Council property in Brookwood Drive, was brought before the courts after string of complaints from neighbours and being handed fines by Staffordshire Police.

The injunction stops the tenant from using abusive, offensive or threatening language or behaviour towards local residents, or shouting, swearing or screaming towards the residents or visitors of the street and local area. She is also forbidden from using, facilitating or dealing any illegal substance or engaging in any illegal activity from her address in Meir.

The injunction against the woman, who isn’t being named by the council, was granted earlier this month and will be in place for a year. It carries with it the power of arrest, and any breach may be considered a contempt of court which could lead to a prison sentence.

Council leader Abi Brown said: “The coronavirus restrictions are in place to protect us all from the spread of this killer virus. Reckless and wilful disregard of these rules will not be tolerated. Our housing team worked closely with local residents to gather evidence and witness statements for the prosecution. We worked in partnership with Staffordshire Police who attended her address regularly.

“The injunction will help to stop this tenant from putting her own health and wellbeing at risk, and the health of others. It sends a strong message that partners working collectively will take action to protect the vast majority of people who are doing all they can to follow the health guidance at this crucial time in our city’s fight against the infection.”

Sergeant Chris Moss, deputy commander of Stoke-on-Trent South Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “We work closely with our partners, including Stoke-on-Trent City Council, to deal with incidents where there are clear Covid-19 breaches.

“Injunctions come after an individual has failed to respond to previous advice, warnings and enforcement. Everyone has a right to feel safe in their neighbourhood without having their quality of life negatively impacted.

“We will continue to respond to reports of breaches around Covid-19 where the guidelines have been ignored and take the necessary action to the circumstances we are faced with.

“We have dedicated patrols who respond to reports over breaches along with proactively targeting hotspot locations and offering advice to our communities.”

This comes as fines of £800 for anyone attending a house party of more than 15 people have been introduced in England this week, under new COVID-19 measures. These will double for each repeat offence to a maximum of £6,400.

Council leader Abi Brown continues: “I welcome these changes wholeheartedly, although it is only a small minority of people who continue to flout the rules, we need to do everything we can to further enforce that rule breaking will not be tolerated.”

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