Gosport woman fined £1,700 in 'moment of madness' visiting boyfriend in Portsmouth hotel in Covid lockdown

A WOMAN has been fined £1,760 in court for a ‘moment of madness’ when she visited her boyfriend in a hotel in Covid lockdown.

Friday, 3rd September 2021, 1:44 pm

Becky Ward, 24, of Trinity Green, Gosport, caught the ferry to see her partner at a hotel in Landport Terrace, Southsea.

PC Lorence Saunders said hotel staff asked the man, who had been placed in the hotel by the council, to get Ward to leave on February 26 but he declined.

Staff then called police and PC Saunders and a colleague arrived at 9am the next day.

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Police presence at Canoe Lake, Southsea, as the rule-of-six returned in March 2021. Picture: Habibur Rahman

Management opened the room door as there was no response to police - and inside was Ward and her partner.

PC Saunders said: ‘On speaking to both (him) and Ward they were fully aware of the rules and Ward even stated it was a moment of madness her getting the ferry down last night to see (him).

‘Police fully explained to Ward that this was breaching Covid restrictions as it was not classed as essential travel, Ward was reported for breaching Covid and cautioned.’

She said ‘yeah I understand,’ was escorted out of the hotel and told not to return.

She must pay a £176 surcharge, £85 cost and the fine after being found guilty in her absence of participating in a gathering of two or more people.

Two people attending a six-strong house party in Waverley Road, Southsea, were among the others this week prosecuted for Covid breaches.

Kiara Charles, 21, of North End Grove, North End, was fined £1,760 with a £176 victim surcharge and £85 costs, as was Aleisha Chipendembe, 20, of Broom Grove, Rotherham in South Yorkshire.

Both were found guilty of participating in a gathering of two or more people at the house party on January 25.

Police were called at 3.28am after a member of the public reported a party at the house.

PC Christopher White said both women ‘confirmed that they were at the address to see friends and did not reside at the property’.

But then they both claimed ‘they were unaware of the Covid-19 regulations as they were busy and did not watch the news,’ he added.

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Chipendembe at first gave her name as Sarah Wilson, but when taken back by police to her flat in the United Students block in Greetham Street, in the city centre, produced a driving licence with her real name.

In another case heard this week, Jacob Clarke, 20, of Tottenham Road, Landport, was fined £1,760 after police were called to four people fighting in Nancy Road, Fratton, on February 15, at 8.10pm.

PC Elliot Baxman said he arrived to see four men talking in the street but not fighting.

PC Baxman spoke to three of the men. The officer said: ‘(They) were in drink and I could smell intoxicating (liquor) on their breath, (one man) still had a can of alcohol in his hands.

‘They were not fighting when I arrived however they were being very noisy. I asked the males why they were not at home and what they were doing.

‘They said that they were out for a walk as a three and they were drinking. I advised them that we are in a national lockdown and they cannot be out drinking with their friends however, they tried to explain to me that they were exercising.

‘They explained that the fourth male was not with them but was talking to them in the street.

‘Due to the males not being able to give a reasonable excuse for being out their house, being in a group of three, being in drink and drinking whilst out of the address I decided to report them all for breaching Covid rules.’

Clarke must pay a £176 surcharge and £85 costs.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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