'Have you got a brain?': Angry police officers crash Covid-breaching Manchester flat party

16 February 2021, 15:33

Ewan Quayle

By Ewan Quayle

Police officers were left furious after party-goers at a flat in Manchester claimed not to know there was a Covid-19 lockdown.

Around 40 people were gathered at a luxury apartment in the city's famous Beetham Tower on Saturday when officers received reports of a serious breach of Covid-19 restrictions.

Police arrived at the flat at around 3am to find party-goers who refused to tell officers where they lived and claimed not to know there was a national lockdown.

Read more: Four fined £10,000 after not declaring travel from red list countries

Greater Manchester Police released footage of the incident, where an officer repeatedly asks one rule-breaker "have you got a brain?" when they claimed to be unaware of Covid-19 restrictions.

Police crashed a Covid-breaching party in Manchester on Saturday
Police crashed a Covid-breaching party in Manchester on Saturday. Picture: PA Images

Shortly before 9pm on Friday 12 February, officers began to receive initial reports of a gathering of six people at a private residence in Beetham Tower but were unable to establish any evidence of this.

"You've all breached coronavirus regulations," one officer told the crowd, "do you know we're in a lockdown?"

One person at the party shouted out that he "doesn't have a TV" so did not know about the rules.

Read more: Police pelted with bottles as they raid illegal nightclub with 150 people in Birmingham

"But you've got a brain though, haven't you?" the officer replied.

Police received reports about a party in the building hours before responding but decided to intervene after being told there could be a fight involving up to 50 people.

Officers were called to a flat party inside Beetham Tower in Manchester
Officers were called to a flat party inside Beetham Tower in Manchester. Picture: PA Images

Some of the group, aged in their 20s and 30s, dispersed when officers arrived.

GMP said it is looking at "retrospective action" for attendees, including handing the organiser with a maximum £10,000 fine.

Read more: Ministers say rapid testing could be 'route forward' for opening nightclubs and theatres

It was one of 74 major Covid-19 breaches attended by officers over the weekend, with 185 fixed penalty notices handed out for incidents including an 18th birthday party attended by at least 30 people and a staff party at an industrial estate in the neighbouring city of Salford.

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