Repulsive footage revealed the moment a father of five, Anthony Baldwin, was pepper-sprayed and arrested by police after refusing to wear a face-covering on public transport. He explains why he’s exempt.
The father of five has insisted he’s exempt from wearing a face mask in public amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and he said he’s innocent after police pepper-sprayed him and arrested him.
Anthony Baldwin, 34, was approached by a British Transport Police officer while on a train at Lime Street Station in Liverpool on Wednesday.
Footage of the arrest has gone viral, with many appalled to see the man pepper-sprayed and arrested when the conflict between the roofer and the officer became fraught and the video showed Anthony Baldwin insist he was ‘exempt’ from needing to wear a mask on public transport and he was seen arguing with the officer when he ordered him to wear a face covering.
Anthony Baldwin alleges he didn’t need to wear a face-covering because he suffers from anxiety and panic attacks.
In the video, the policeman dragged his top over his head and you could actually hear him yelling.
Anthony Baldwin said that he began suffering from severe anxiety following the death of his father five years ago. He further said he suffered a panic attack when he was in the back of the police van and says he manages his anxiety with medication.
He went on to claim he spent three hours in hospital following Wednesday’s incident and said he sustained an injury to the head during the tense arrest. He also alleged he refused to get off the train on Wednesday as he was on his way to an appointment at the time British Transport Police approached him.
Official government guidance does spotlight anxiety as one of the conditions that would make someone exempt from wearing a face-covering on public transport and the government website says that the public are asked to be mindful of people who are exempt from wearing a face covering.
The list of exemptions, which has been in place since face coverings became mandatory on public transport, includes hidden conditions such as anxiety or panic disorders, autism, breathing conditions, dementia, reduced eyesight or if you’re with someone who relies on lip-reading to communicate.
Face coverings became compulsory on public transport in the United Kingdom in June, with penalties of £100 for those who refused to obey the rules, unless exempt.
It’s believed that Anthony Baldwin was arrested for threatening conduct and assault of an officer following Wednesday’s incident. However, all the police officer had to do is issue Mr Baldwin with a fine, which he could have appealed against – there was no need for the police officer to apprehend this man, all he had to do was inform him that if he didn’t wear a face-covering he would be issued with a fine.
The incident occurred at about 3.20 pm on Wednesday 2 September, when officers had responded to a report of a man coughing at two passengers.
A news outlet reported that Anthony Baldwin, of Little Sutton, will appear at Liverpool and Knowsley Magistrates Court on January 6, accused of threatening conduct and assault, no mention of the face-covering though or a fine.
This is the beginnings of a totalitarian state, so are they now going to ignore the Equality Act, spray mace in the face and attack everyone who’s exempt?
First, they go after the sick and disabled, then the minorities and then anyone who speaks out against it, and if you tolerate this, then your children will be next, and people need to understand that it starts with small obedience so that eventually they can take control of other elements of your life.
And if you look very closely at the video footage you will also see that there was another young man sitting there with no mask on either, so why did they pick on just this one guy, when another young guy was sitting without a face covering, yet they didn’t say anything to him?
This is ultimately the beginning of a totalitarian state and this is fascism and whether they’re a private company or not, the fact that people can be refused service due to whether they have complied in an act of which is back by such little scientific proof for a so-called pandemic is utterly ludicrous.
Now it all starts to unveil and we must stand up for our rights, which was what this man was attempting to do and it explicitly states that if wearing a face-covering causes you severe anxiety, you will be exempt and who are we to define which person does or does not suffer from severe distress from a face covering?
We have no idea what traumatic history a person has suffered and we have no right to challenge them under the Equality Act 2010.
Anthony Baldwin refused to leave the train, yet he explicitly stated to the police officer that he was exempt because he had an underlying health condition and that he was exempt by law – ‘the law’, the very thing the police are supposed to uphold, but this police officer blatantly disregarded that ‘law’ and abused his power to a very large extent.
And why is this man in the wrong? Because he’s exempt because he didn’t explain the reason why he was exempt, or for not getting off the train, or was it for protesting against being attacked by the police officer? Where do we draw the line here? And would it also be okay to do this to someone who was Autistic?
What the Police Officer should have done was to sit down next to him and talk to him like a normal human being to find out why he was exempt, that way the officer would have found out why he was exempt and could have dealt with the situation accordingly, instead, he just bounded in there all guns blazing so that he could assert his authority.
This Police Officer overstepped his powers and ended up creating a public disorder. The Police Officer didn’t arrest him or detain him until other Police Officers arrived, but he did attack him and that’s Common Assault.
And according to the government website, there’s no requirement to carry any evidence that you have a disability of any kind. So, basically, anyone can say they’re exempt, so what’s the point of anyone wearing a face covering?
Where will the madness end? What are the Government going to say next? That we have to wear a mask at all times, even in one’s home or even during sex, where is the madness going to stop?
There are around 700,000 autistic people in the United Kingdom, that’s more than 1 in 100 and if someone with Autism had been approached by a Police Officer they would probably react in the same way Anthony Baldwin did, and this bothers me considerably.
This is what’s happening in our society now – poor disabled souls being abused by mask-wearing monsters and it’s a disgrace how these poor souls are being treated like freaks and this is causing a lot of friction within the general public and before you know it the police will be dealing with more assaults on disabled people that have in fact done nothing wrong.
This policeman outside of the police has absolutely no authority over anyone or anything – the uniform is his life but when he’s wearing civvie clothes, he’s a nobody and you should be innocent until proven guilty.
Most people are courteous and thoughtful but the minority such as the police are offensive and intimidating and the British Transport policeman’s response was horrifying. The policeman was out of order and he aggravated the situation with more germs and his actions were not fitting for the position that he holds.
The policeman clearly could have done better and you could clearly see civilians on the train complaining about his actions and the policeman reacted with ego more than attempting to implement the law and it was all really badly handled.
Some people can manage with masks, some suffer from COPD and can’t. Other people suffer from claustrophobia and feel stifled when their face is masked, but I suppose everyone is entitled to comment – the next thing it will be is that if you can’t wear a face mask, then stay indoors.
There are numerous people out there that can’t wear masks and don’t have a letter from their doctor (have you seen how much they charge for a letter?) And had it been another person with breathing difficulties such as asthma or lung disease they’d probably be in the hospital right now from being hauled about and this Police Officer should have called for assistance earlier than he did.
So, what are we going to have Concentration Camps for people refusing to wear a mask – Orwellian State here we come.
Unfortunately, we can only comment on what we can see in the video – there was nothing mentioned about spitting, in this case, all the Police Officer was going on about was not wearing a face mask.
And now the public are in fear which tends to lead to exaggeration and people are not thinking straight. You only have to cough and other people start treating you like a pariah and run for the hills in sheer panic – this fear is being thrust upon us and it’s changing the environment that we live in and it’s wrong on every level.
The Police Officer had plenty of options, but instead, he chose to overreact, but somehow now we’re not allowed to cough on a train, but it’s not against the law to do so, and nobody is allowed to ask you why you’re exempt.
Evidently, Anthony Baldwin spat on someone, however, that was not filmed and at no point did the Police Officer communicate this to the man, only about not being masked up and yet he took it upon himself to escalate the incident to brutality and did not wait for his colleagues to arrive – this fiasco didn’t need to happen.
The police don’t turn up that fast for domestic violence, but see how fast they’ll turn up if you’re not wearing a face mask just so that they can get a potential kick out of it and to deny one service because they’re not wearing a mask is discrimination which is a culpable crime.
The law state that if you have any ailment that causes you distress when wearing a mask, whether it be because you have lung problems or some other disability, then you don’t have to wear one.
Whether this is true or not, this man was saying that he was exempt from wearing one and the law says that there’s no requirement of evidence for this.
Anthony Baldwin stating he was exempt was enough in the eyes of the law – again, whether right or wrong.
In the video footage, this man didn’t look like he had done anything wrong (in the eyes of the law), yet he was literally mauled by various officers and this is 100 per cent wrong on every level.
Having a disability isn’t always seen and sometimes it’s hidden – does this mean that someone who has hidden disabilities is not disabled?
Ordinarily, I’m all for the police as they mainly do a superb job with what resources they’re given and ordinarily take a lot of slack. However, in this instance, they were in the wrong and I really think this guy was pretty well behaved given the way the first officer manhandled him and it was a complete misuse of resources.