Rome Police: All Vehicles Must Be Stopped at Checkpoints

Italian police stop vehicles to check papers.
AFP/Piero CRUCIATTI

ROME — A new directive to Rome police eliminates random vehicle checks, instructing officers to stop every vehicle passing checkpoints in order to limit movement and so curb the spread of the coronavirus.

A three-page memo outlining new measures to better restrict citizens to their homes has been issued by the Rome police commissioner and was obtained by Breitbart News on Friday. The instructions include a constant presence of patrol vehicles on Rome streets and the use of loudspeakers to remind people to remain in their homes, warning that “transgressors will be prosecuted.”

The directive also mandates the establishment of vehicle checkpoints that will force all passing cars to line up in a single lane. Each driver is required to produce the required documents, including an “auto-certificazione” attesting to the motives for movement as well as providing data such as name, address, phone number, and the number of a valid identification card.

Under present regulations, Italians are only allowed out of their homes to carry out “essential” activities, such as purchasing food, buying medicine, limited physical exercise, or permitted work that is deemed to be socially necessary.

The new police memo specifies that the patrol officers are to interpret stated motives for leaving one’s home in the strictest possible sense. It also states that all city parks are to be closed, presumably because they are difficult to patrol.

“The objective of these measures is clearly to make it understood that state and local police are carrying out targeted checks” in order to generate “fear and respect for the controls,” the memo states.

The mayor of Rome as well as Italy’s ministry of the interior have been publishing daily reports of how many stops have been carried out both in Rome and Italy at large as well as the number of citizens who have been sanctioned for failing to comply with the norms of the national lockdown.

Despite Italy’s nationwide quarantine, the daily numbers of new coronavirus cases as well as deaths have remained disconcertingly high, with the total number of cases approaching 50,000 (47,021) and more deaths (4,032) than any other country, including China.

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