THIS is the moment an Asda shopper was reportedly handcuffed and pinned to the floor by cops in a row over his Covid mask.
Ryan Farrell, 27, says he was arrested for wearing his mask around his neck – rather than over his face – when he was shopping in Birkenhead.
Video captures the moment an Asda shopper was handcuffed by cops after ‘pulling down his mask to clear his glasses’
Ryan Farrell, 27, was taken to the floor in front of his little boy
He was then frog-marched out of Asda, de-arrested and banned from the supermarket by security guards
But the dad-of-one said he simply moved the mask down when his glasses steamed up.
He was asked to cover his face when he stopped to buy tobacco, and was then approached by police who asked for his details.
However, when he reportedly refused to hand his information over, he was arrested.
He claims he was pinned to the floor and handcuffed in front of his partner – who filmed the scuffle – and one-year-old son before being fined £100 and banned from the store.
Mr Farrell said he wore his mask properly throughout the shop – and shifted it quickly to allow his glasses to clear.
But Merseyside Police claim he lowered his mask, refused to give his details, and then resisted arrest.
Mr Farrell told the Liverpool Echo: “We wore our masks the entire way around the store.
“As we were leaving, I went up to the kiosk to get some tobacco and my mask was steaming my glasses up.
“I pulled it down slightly to let the steam clear.”
Mr Farrell claimed that, as the family left, the officer then grabbed his coat and asked for his details, which he refused to give.
Major supermarkets now say customers must wear face coverings unless they’re exemptCredit: SWNS:South West News Service
Police can issue a £200 fine to someone breaking the rules in EnglandCredit: Rex Features
The law is enforceable by cops, rather than supermarket workersCredit: Getty Images – Getty
“I didn’t want to give my details because I hadn’t done anything wrong and when he grabbed me I tried to pull away,” he said.
“I was startled and I didn’t know what to do so I tried to get him away from me.
“He then put my hands behind my back and pushed me onto the floor.”
Under the law, face masks must be worn in supermarkets and shops across the UK unless there’s a medical reason.
Police can issue a £200 fine to someone breaking the rules in England, while the penalty is £60 in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales.
Mr Farrell’s partner filmed him on the ground with three police officers around him.
She can be heard in the clip telling one cop: “There’s no need for that. It’s plainly bullying.
“No need. He’s done nothing whatsoever.”
A spokesperson for Merseyside Police said: “When asked by the officer to put on the face mask he pulled up the mask and walked away but was then seen to lower it again.
“He was advised by the officer to put the mask on properly or he would receive a fine.
My son suffers with respiratory problems and almost died… I always wear my mask because I wouldn’t forgive myself if he got sick again.
“The officer attempted to engage with the gentleman to explain why he had been spoken to about his mask and was asked for his name in order to record the advice, which he refused to give.
“He was advised if he refused to give his details he would be arrested. As the officer attempted to arrest him the man resisted arrest and was eventually safely handcuffed on the floor.
“He was taken out of the front of the store where he was given a fixed penalty notice under coronavirus regulations and de-arrested.”
Mr Farrell said: “My son suffers with respiratory problems and almost died about a year ago, so we are very wary about putting him at risk.
“I always wear my mask because I wouldn’t forgive myself if he got sick again and my partner has been very wary about going out, so this was extremely upsetting.”
Mr Farrell was also told by the store’s security guard that he was banned for life.
A spokesperson for Asda confirmed that Mr Farrell had been banned from the store.
It comes after cops in the West Midlands were forced to apologise when a man heading to work was threatened with arrest and forced into a police car when he refused to give his name.
After video taken by shocked Nino Romano, 21, circulated on social media, the force began an investigation and later apologised for the officer’s conduct which “fell far below what we would expect”.
The most recent figures showed police officers in England have now handed out 28,744 fines since the start of lockdown in March, with 80 per cent going to flouters aged between 18 and 39.