Man charged with assault, woman fined for not wearing a mask at the Organic Store in Bowral

COVID BREACH: Police attended the Organic Store in Bowral following reports. Photo: Michelle Haines Thomas
COVID BREACH: Police attended the Organic Store in Bowral following reports. Photo: Michelle Haines Thomas

A man has been charged with assaulting police after being called to investigate mask breaches by members of the public.

After calls from the public, police officers saw face mask-free employees and customers inside the Organic Store at Bowral in the NSW Southern Highlands.

The 62-year-old manager told police she had no intention of complying with the current orders to wear a mask and was arrested. She refused to provide police her details.

A female customer, aged 61, entered the store not wearing a face mask. Police requested the woman put a mask on or leave the store, but she refused.

A sign outside the Organic Store. Photo: Michelle Haines Thomas

A sign outside the Organic Store. Photo: Michelle Haines Thomas

The employee intervened, demanding police leave and both women were arrested.

As officers escorted the women outside to a police vehicle, they were confronted by a man who yelled at officers before pulling down the face mask of a sergeant.

The 63-year-old man was also arrested and all three were taken to Southern Highlands Police Station.

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Deputy Commissioner Gary Worboys said the excuse used for not wearing a mask was "simply that they had no belief in the wearing of masks or the order".

He said "they [had] absolutely no intention at all in complying with the order".

"It's not on, police took suitable action, police went to that location as a result of community concern.

"It was ... a number of people in the community who alerted police to that instance, and police went there and took action."

The man was charged with assault officer in execution of duty, resist officer in execution of duty and incite to resist/hinder police officer in execution duty.

He was given conditional bail to appear at Moss Vale Local Court on August 3.

The two women were later released with the younger woman issued a $200 PIN for not wear fitted face covering while in an indoor area of retail/business premises.

Further charges and infringements are expected with inquiries continuing into additional Public Health Order breaches.

In total, 75 PINs were issued across NSW on Thursday with 46 $200 infringements for failing to wear a mask.

This story Man charged, woman fined after mask mayhem at organic store first appeared on Southern Highland News.