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No fines for people attending Guelph anti-lockdown event on Saturday

Guelph police said they would only become involved if requested by city bylaw officers

No fines were issued Saturday for those attending an anti-lockdown rally in front of city hall.

In a news release sent this weekend, the City of Guelph said police and bylaw officers have the authority to disperse crowds for indoor or outdoor gatherings involving people who don’t live together. 

About 25 people attended an anti-lockdown protest held Saturday at Guelph City Hall. They held a similar event the week before and others have been held in St. George's Square and on Baker Street.

Guelph Police Service spokesperson Scott Tracey said police would only have attended if requested by bylaw officers.

"While (Guelph police) officers did drive by a couple of times to monitor the protest it does not appear they directly engaged with the participants or were requested to assist bylaw," said Tracey.

City of Guelph spokesperson Stacey Hare said nobody attending the conference was ticketed by either bylaw or police.

Eight people were ticketed in Barrie on Saturday at a similar protest that attracted hundreds of people. Among those ticketed was the organizer, said Barrie Police.

A total of seven fines were laid between April 12 and 19 in relation with two other gatherings, totalling $740 for each person.

Three fines at $750 each were laid against non-essential businesses within the same date range, said Hare.

Those fines were issued under the Reopening Ontario Act.

Guelph police also issued two court summonses, but Hare said it was unclear at press time whether they were issued to people or to businesses.