Covid denying couple from Haywards Heath appear in Crawley court charged with dressing up as police
Anti-vax protesters turned up at court dressed as police to support their friends who were arrested at a demo and charged with - dressing up as police.
The fake coppers were showing their support for two more protesters who regularly dress as Peace Officers and patrol anti-vax demonstrations.
Covid deniers David Stewart and Jessica Collins, Haywards Road, described their arrest for wearing fake police uniforms at the anti-vax demo in Crawley earlier this month as a farce.
The couple, who were dressed in police-style gear with Peace Officer insignia, told magistrates they were not trying to fool the public.
David Stewart, 43, and Jessica Collins, 32, who regularly dress in hi-visibility jackets with Peace Officer UK insignia at protests, claim conspiracy theorist David Icke as a supporter.
The couple appeared before magistrates in Crawley as their supporters outside could be heard honking horns.
A large group of covid deniers and anti-vaxxers congratulated them as they left court.
The court heard they were wearing bowler hats and black cargo trousers resembling a member of a police force.
Prosecutor Mariea Slater said: “They were taking part in anti-vax protest.
“They came to police attention by wearing police style hats with chequered pattern on the hat and hi-vis vests.
“They had shoulder detail very similar to police uniform.
“Members of the public told police they were approaching them believing they were officers.”
The two hour protest in Crawley on October 2 draw a crowd of around 50 anti-vaxxers.
The couple, from Haywards Heath, were arrested during the demo.
Speaking after the court hearing, David Stewart said the couple regularly attend demonstrations in their Peace Officer uniforms.
He added: “It’s a farce.
“They knew we weren’t acting as police.
“We were interacting with police the whole time.
“We were having friendly conversations with them.
“We are covid deniers, not anti-vaxxers.
“If anybody mistakes us as police, we always set them straight.
“We are always surrounded by police at these protests anyway.
“If was are approached by people who want directions or anything like that, as humans, we obviously help them.
“We are there to calm down any potential situation which could lead to a public order offence.
“At the last one, we went round picking up bottles which could have been thrown at police and they thanked us for doing it.”
Magistrates in Crawley sent them for trial next March.