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Charges laid in alleged assault of Manitoba COVID-19 enforcement officer, province says

Manitoba officials say charges have been laid in the alleged assault of a COVID-19 enforcement officer. Don Mitchell / Global News

The Manitoba government says charges have been laid in connection to the alleged assault of a COVID-19 enforcement officer.

The province said the assault happened Feb. 19, in a press release on Tuesday, but details, including the extent of the officer’s injuries, have not been released.

Read more: Manitoba to remain under ‘critical’ level of COVID-19 pandemic response

Premier Brian Pallister said Manitobans need to respect those who’ve been tasked with enforcing the province’s COVID-19 public health orders.

“Remember these folks are out there doing their best to protect you, and they don’t deserve to be treated badly by you or anyone else,” Pallister said Tuesday, declining to comment on specifics of the case because it’s before the courts.

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Coronavirus: Manitoba to remain under ‘critical’ level of COVID-19 pandemic response – Mar 23, 2021

“If you see that happening, please stand up for these people and give them some additional protection and back up.”

Pallister also confirmed three separate incidents last week where he said enforcement officers were verbally abused.

Read more: Coronavirus enforcement officer assaulted in Winnipeg, province says

The provincial release didn’t name the person charged, or specify what exactly they’ve been charged with.

In a release sent to media Feb. 23, the province said an enforcement officer had been assaulted while on the job sometime during the previous week. The province declined to say whether the charges announced Tuesday are connected to that alleged assault.

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The news comes as officials say another 59 warnings and 32 tickets were issued for COVID-19 health code violations last week.

The tickets include 26 $1,296 fines to individuals for various offences, four $298 fines for not wearing a mask in indoor public places, and two $5,000 fines to businesses.

Read more: Manitoba reports 1 COVID-19 death, 98 new cases

Since enforcement started in April, the province says a total of 3,492 warnings and 1,082 tickets have been issued to individuals and businesses, resulting in more than $1.5 million in fines.

The province says nearly 3,300 personnel across various agencies are currently able to enforce public health orders.

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