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Man charged with threatening behaviour and assaulting a police officer during train face mask row
4 September 2020, 14:08 | Updated: 4 September 2020, 14:13
A man has been charged with threatening behaviour and assaulting a police officer during a face mask row on a train.
Police boarded a Merseyrail train at Liverpool Lime Street station on Wednesday afternoon in response to a report of a man coughing at two passengers.
An argument followed between a man not wearing a mask and a British Transport Police (BTP) officer who asked him to leave the train.
Mobile phone footage of the incident has been widely shared on social media and shows the man telling the officer: "You're not allowed to touch me by law.
"I do not have to wear a mask, end of, and you don't have to challenge me either."
The officer replies: "I'm not going to argue any more. You're getting off or we're taking you off."
The passenger refuses and a struggle ensues as the officer attempts to eject him from the train.
He is then warned to "get off the train or I'll get you locked up", before the officer says "I'll spray you, mate".
The spray is discharged and then more officers arrive and the man is taken off the train.
A complaint has since been made to BTP's Professional Standards Department, which is being assessed.
Anyone travelling on public transport in England must wear a face covering under Covid-19 regulations, apart from children under 11 and people with disabilities or certain health conditions.
Anthony Baldwin, 34, of Hawthorn Road, Little Sutton, will appear at Liverpool and Knowsley Magistrates' Court on January 6 accused of threatening behaviour and assault.