The incident occurred in the early morning hours of Tuesday, July 20, in the city of Perth, the capital and largest city of the state of Western Australia.
The man in question is Travis Jay Myles, 39, a resident of the northeastern state of Queensland. Myles arrived in Perth on an interstate flight from Brisbane, the capital and largest city of Queensland, on Monday.
He applied to be permitted to enter the state under Western Australia’s extreme border entry rules. According to these lockdown regulations, Queensland is considered a “medium risk state.” This means only people with essential professions or with “compassionate reasons” to travel to the state can enter. (Related: Australia announces beginning of ‘New World Order’ as harsh COVID lockdowns imposed.)
These rules are supposedly in place to prevent the virus from entering the state from elsewhere in the country.
Myles’ application was denied. He was ordered to leave the state within 48 hours. He was taken to a hotel in the inner-city neighborhood of Rivervale for temporary quarantine ahead of a scheduled flight back to Brisbane.
But according to the Western Australia Police Force (WAPF), Myles attempted to escape before his flight.
At about 12:45 a.m. on Tuesday, “he climbed out a window of the fourth-floor room using a rope made of bedsheets and fled the area,” said the WAPF in a post on the force’s social media account. The police added that Myles used at least six bedsheets in his escape.
Myles was able to evade authorities for over eight hours. He was found by WAPF officers at 8:55 a.m. in the northern neighborhood of Mount Lawley. He was subsequently arrested and charged under state emergency laws with failure to comply with a direction and providing false or misleading information.
He appeared before a judge in the Perth Magistrates Court virtually on Tuesday afternoon, several hours after his arrest. He did not apply for bail. He was remanded in custody until early August, when his 14-day forced quarantine period ends. After this period, he will appear in court in person.
Authorities tested him for COVID-19. The test came back negative.
According to Western Australia’s lockdown rules, it has a hard border with the Australian states of Victoria, Queensland and New South Wales. Limited travel is permitted from South Australia and the Australian Capital Territory.
Free travel is allowed from Tasmania and the Northern Territory. Western Australia also has a free travel agreement with New Zealand.
Woman escaped forced quarantine in Western Australia to eat out and go shopping
Myles’s situation, while peculiar, is not unique. At least one other person has been recorded attempting to escape forced quarantine in Western Australia.
On Wednesday, just one day after Myles attempted to escape and was then arrested, the WAPF charged an American woman with multiple quarantine breaches.
The woman, Sonya Anglin, 23, arrived in Perth from the city of Cairns in northern Queensland on July 16.
Unlike Myles, Anglin was permitted to enter Western Australia. But she had to undergo 14 days of forced quarantine at a hotel.
WAPF alleged Anglin was not in her room when officers went to check in on her several times on the week of her arrest. The police claim she broke quarantine to dine and shop in Perth’s central business district.
“She had visited a licensed cafe and gone shopping within the Perth CBD,” said the police in a statement on Wednesday. The police earlier accused Anglin of going to a nightclub, but the WAPF retracted this accusation in its statement.
Police further came Anglin’s behavior came despite clear orders from officers to quarantine for 14 days in a hotel the very day she touched down at Perth Airport.
The WAPF tested her for COVID-19 upon her arrest. It came back negative. She was charged with five counts of failure to comply with a direction.
She faced the Perth Magistrates Court later on Wednesday, where she attempted to apply for bail but was rejected. Anglin was then remanded in custody and is due to appear in court again on July 30.
Learn more about the state of repressive lockdowns in Australia and in other parts of the world by reading the latest articles at Pandemic.news.