FACT CHECK: Does This Video Show Italian Police Arresting A Man For Violating The Coronavirus Lockdown?

Jonathan Fonti | Fact Check Reporter

A video shared on Facebook purportedly shows Italian police officers forcibly arresting a man for flouting the country’s coronavirus lockdown.

Verdict: False

The video shows Brazilian military police arresting a man in Sao Paulo in late March and is unrelated to the coronavirus pandemic.

Fact Check:

Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte instituted a nationwide lockdown on March 9 in an effort to curb the spread of the new coronavirus. Under the lockdown, people can only leave their homes for groceries, medical necessities and work, among other essential functions, according to The New York Times.

The viral video purportedly shows Italian police using force to arrest man in violation of the national lockdown, saying, “Wen (sic) Italy say lock down they fuckin mean it.” (RELATED: Viral Image Says Alabama Police Planted Evidence On Over 1,000 Black Men)

In the video, one officer points his gun at the man, who then lifts his shirt, presumably to show that he does not have a weapon. More police arrive on the scene, including one who takes the man down with a leg sweep, and the man gets handcuffed.

Contrary to the post’s claim, the video was not filmed in Italy. A bystander took the footage in Sao Paulo, Brazil, during the arrest of a drunk man who threatened people with a knife by military police in late March. Brazilian news outlets, including Estadao and G1, included the video in their reporting of the incident.

Many of Brazil’s governors have imposed quarantine measures in their states in an effort to contain the country’s coronavirus outbreak, according to Reuters. The Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center reports that Brazil has some 40,814 confirmed cases and 2,588 deaths, at the time of publication.

Jonathan Fonti

Fact Check Reporter
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