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Muizenberg family arrested after toddler ran off the boardwalk onto the beach

5 May 2020 9:12 AM
Tags:
SAPS
Disaster regulations
LockdownSA
Liam Bulgen
Covid-19 restrictions
beach restrictions

Liam Bulgen and his partner Tereza were put into a police van while she was breastfeeding their 21-month-old toddler.

With the disaster act regulations during the Covid-19 lockdown in place, Muizenberg resident Liam Bulgen describes how he and his family were arrested after his toddler ran onto the beach while they were walking on the promenade.

I woke up today and thought was that a bad dream?

Liam Bulgen, Resident - Muizenberg

We left home quite late yesterday, at about 8.20 am, because we had been busy cooking food for the Vrygrond Feeding Scheme.

Liam Bulgen, Resident - Muizenberg

We live quite close to the beach and arrived at about 8.30 and we were walking along the Muizenberg boardwalk in the middle of the promenade. My fiance wanted some space so I thought I would just stop with my child who is 21-months-old and take her out of the carrier.

Liam Bulgen, Resident - Muizenberg

As I put her down out of the carrier she literally just hopped over onto the beach and she managed to get about 1.5 metres onto the sand. I ran after her and grabbed her. She made a scene. My partner came back because she heard her crying.

Liam Bulgen, Resident - Muizenberg

We were literally in the process of dragging my child off the sand when we got arrested.

Liam Bulgen, Resident - Muizenberg

He says there is still some confusion about what they were arrested for. He says the police captain said the charge was for being on the beach which breaks the disaster regulations.

Even though we explained to him that we were just trying to pick up our child who was having a tantrum.

Liam Bulgen, Resident - Muizenberg

He says it all took only a few minutes.

While we were walking to the police vehicle, one officer, told me I am stupid for having my child out in public because she could die.

Liam Bulgen, Resident - Muizenberg

The senior police officer who was not wearing a mask told us we were in very, very big trouble..

Liam Bulgen, Resident - Muizenberg

At that stage, Liam's partner Tereza was breastfeeding their daughter to try and calm her down.

They forcefully insisted she gets into the other police vehicle while she was breastfeeding, no safety belt on, and the police officer driving the vehicle was not wearing a mask.

Liam Bulgen, Resident - Muizenberg

Listen to Liam's account of what happened below:


5 May 2020 9:12 AM
Tags:
SAPS
Disaster regulations
LockdownSA
Liam Bulgen
Covid-19 restrictions
beach restrictions

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