A MAN in Castellon has been sent to prison for refusing to wear a mask in the street.
The 28-year-old – who has a history of bodily harm, disobedience, assault on an officer and resisting arrest – was spotted without the obligatory COVID protection equipment by a National Police patrol on Benicassim avenue in the provincial capital this week.
The officers reportedly stopped and asked him if he had any health conditions that excused him from wearing one, to which he first replied that he did not have a mask.
When offered one by the officers, the suspect allegedly snapped back that he was not wearing one because ‘he didn’t want to’, according to the police report.
One of the policemen then asked the man to identify himself in order to issue a fine, all the while insisting that he put on a mask, but the suspect reportedly refused to do either.
Eventually the patrol arrested him on a serious disobedience charge. Reports claim that the suspect continued refusing to wear a facemask during his statement at the police station and even once inside Castellon courts, where a judge ordered that he be remanded in custody awaiting trial.
Although an extreme case, this was by no means the only situation where the police have been forced to intervene to enforce anti-COVID measures in the Valencian Community this week.
On Wednesday (January 20), the National Police in the regional capital booked 20 young people who had gathered in a park in the Abastos area without wearing masks or maintaining social distancing.
Another eight teenagers were fined for consumption of illicit substances while one was reported for insulting the officers.
The authorities insist that facemasks are obligatory by law over the age of six years old in open and enclosed spaces throughout the country, even when social distancing can be maintained.
From there, each region applies the basic measures slightly differently. In the Valencian Community, masks can only be taken off in open spaces outside cities and towns, at swimming pools and on beaches, during sporting activities and when the user has proof of some kind of ailment that would be aggravated by the use of a facemask.
Customers of bars and restaurants were exempt from wearing them only while eating or drinking, but all establishments are now closed to the public and only allowed to offer take-aways and home deliveries due to a worsening of infection and death rates.