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Police urged to maintain public trust amid complaints about ‘overzealous’ enforcement of coronavirus rules

Police urged to maintain public trust amid complaints about ‘overzealous’ enforcement of coronavirus rules

One of Britain’s most senior police officers has told colleagues their handling of the coronavirus crisis will be remembered for generations and urged the public not to “judge too harshly” following growing criticism of officers’ tactics.

Writing for The Telegraph, Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu said officers must preserve “the trust and confidence of the public” and maintain the tradition of “policing by consent” amid complaints about the “overzealous” enforcement of social distancing regulations.

In a series of incidents over the weekend, police forces have fined individuals £60 for buying “non-essential” goods from shops and going for a drive “due to boredom”.

Smaller shops claim to have been told that selling Easter eggs and hot cross buns goes against new guidance because they do not qualify as essential items.

Assistant Commissioner Basu, the head of counter-terror policing in the UK, said “not every police response will be sure-footed” and added that

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