‘Selfish’ Melbourne driver condemned over coronavirus checkpoint stunt
Eve Black responds to the police officer's questions. Photo: Facebook/Eve Black
A Melbourne driver has been slammed as ‘selfish’ and disrespectful’ after footage surfaced of her refusing to tell police where she was going at a coronavirus checkpoint.
Eve Black shared footage on Thursday of herself driving past an officer at a police barricade, having refused to provide any detail on her travel plans.
Politicians and authorities were quick to rebuke Ms Black for her actions.
Police Minister Lisa Neville said the footage showed an “incredibly selfish person”.
“I’m sure she’ll be looking forward to a knock on the door from Victoria Police members,” Ms Neville said.
Deputy Commissioner Rick Nugent described Ms Black’s actions as a “selfish and childish act”.
“If that woman lived in that area or had a good reason to be in that area, she would be allowed through, if not, she’s breaking the law,” he said.
Mr Nugent said police would speak with Ms Black and she could expect to be fined if she was not permitted to be in the area.
“We’re starting to see in more recent times people talking about their human rights.
“These are clear criminal offences under the Public Health and Wellbeing Act,” he said.
“It’s not one of your human rights to endanger other people; it’s not one of your human rights to put other people at risk.”
Both Mr Nugent and Ms Neville said they felt for the policeman involved, who was put in a difficult position by someone “who deliberately attempted to cause issues for police”.
“We have the power to demand the licence of a driver … in hindsight he could have been [stronger],” Mr Nugent said.
“Unfortunately, if we get this type of behaviour [we’ll need to ask for a licence] on each and every occasion.”
Ms Black uploaded video of the stunt on her Facebook page, where it has been viewed thousands of times.
Upon stopping, a police officer is heard asking Ms Black her reason for travelling.
“Have I disturbed the peace today,” Ms Black asks.
“No,” the police officer replies. “I’m just asking what your reason for travelling is.”
“Well, I don’t need to tell you that. I don’t know you,” Ms Black responds.
“So where have you come from today,” the officer responds, to which Ms Black says “I don’t need to answer your questions, no”.
Reading from a sheet, Ms Black asks “have I committed a crime?”
She repeats the question before the frustrated officer tells her she can keep going through the checkpoint.
An exhilarated Ms Black then drives off with a grin on her face.
“F—ing yes! Oh my God, I feel so good!” she says.
Former federal treasurer Wayne Swan blasted the driver for arguing with police.
‘It makes me angry watching that, it’s dumb and disrespectful,’ he said on the Today show on Friday morning.
“At the end she says she feels good. Well, she won’t feel too good in ICU.”
Mr Swan said 99 per cent of Australians were following the rules but there were a few who refused to do the right thing.
“There are some people who don’t get it and some people who think they’re in some weird television show,” he said.
“But they are playing with people’s lives. People like that should have the book thrown at them.”
Ms Black admitted she was “nervous as heck” as she approached the checkpoint, but encouraged her friends and family to “know their rights” during lockdown.
“I just read from the sheet and he could obviously see it wasn’t worth the trouble,” she said.
The sheet in question appeared to list phrases people attempting to leave lockdown should use when stopped by officers.
Her run-in with police came as Victoria reported 300 coronavirus cases and six deaths – the state’s highest yet in the pandemic – on Friday.
Melbourne and the adjacent Mitchell shire are locked down, with residents only allowed to leave their homes only for four approved reasons – food, exercise, work or study, or medical care.
Those who breach orders face $1652 fines – 262 infringement notices have been given out at checkpoints since July 8.