Police busy in Montreal and Quebec as COVID-19 curfew is lifted
MONTREAL – Police officers were busy Friday evening and throughout the night in Montreal and Quebec where gatherings multiplied with the lifting of the curfew and the gradual relaxation of restrictions put in place due to the COVID pandemic -19.
In Montreal, people flocked to terraces, parks and other outdoor public spaces for the first time in months.
The Montreal police force (SPVM) deployed several police officers on the ground to disperse the crowds in the region of Old Montreal as well as in Laurier Park, said SPVM spokesperson Jean-Pierre Brabant.
Other gatherings took place in the Old Port of Montreal as well as La Fontaine Park, Jarry Park and Laurier Park, but the atmosphere was rather festive and no incidents were reported by the police.
“We remind people that there is a social distance that has to be respected. I would say that is the only point to point out. Yes, it was festive, but the social distancing must be maintained,” said Brabant.
Brabant added that the SPVM was not called upon to intervene.
“I would say that around midnight, half past midnight, people left without a fuss. Everything went very well,” he said.
However, he cannot say whether tickets have been issued for non-compliance with sanitary measures.
“There are checks that will be carried out this morning on the tickets,” Brabant said. “We should have figures later today as to whether any tickets have been issued in relation to the sanitary measures which are still maintained.”
In Quebec, many people were in Victoria Park, where spirits rose between two individuals.
Quebec City police (SPVQ) had to intervene shortly after 9:30 p.m. when a young man in his twenties was stabbed.
“The victim was taken to hospital, but we are not afraid for his life,” said SPVQ spokesperson David Pelletier. “No suspect has been arrested yet. According to our initial information, the victim and his attacker knew each other.”
From Friday evening, the restaurant terraces located in the red and orange zones can accommodate a maximum of two adults from different addresses per table with children.
Outdoor gatherings are also permitted on private property and balconies for up to eight people from two family bubbles, provided the rules of physical distance and masks are observed.
– this report by La Presse canadienne was first published in French on May 29, 2021.