Responding to reports that a private party was in progress at Production Drive just after 10 am yesterday, officers of the Port-of-Spain Division Task Force, under the supervision of PC Bacchus, attempted to shut it down and disperse the crowd, which was estimated to be over 300 strong.
Arriving at the home of a deceased gang leader to find music blasting and persons partying in a jouvert-like atmosphere, the handful of officers tried to warn persons about breaches to the public health regulations but the crowd, many of whom were covered in body paint and coloured powder, reportedly became angry and began advancing on the officers.
Although the disc jockey complied with instructions from PCs Bacchus and Aguillera to turn off the loud music, the attendees were reportedly incited by one man known to the police, who told them not to listen and instead ordered them to curse and chase the officers.
Fearing for their safety, the officers called for assistance, which led to units from the Port-of-Spain Task Force, Inter Agency Task Force and the Emergency Response Patrol responding.
As more law enforcement agents arrived, the crowd quickly dispersed.
However, the resident who incited the crowd was arrested and taken to the Besson Street Police Station, where he was charged with breaching the Public Health Regulations, using obscene language and resisting arrest.
When Guardian Media Limited visited the area yesterday, angry residents remained gathered in groups along the road but declined to speak about the incident.
Meanwhile, there was a heavy police presence at several north-coast beaches yesterday, as officers ensured people complied with instructions not to congregate, to wear masks in public and also refrain from parking along the North Coast Road which leads to the Maracas, Tyrico, Las Cuevas and Blanchisseuse beaches.
Visitors stopping to purchase popular treats at the Maracas look-out were surprised to hear a female officer on a loud-speaker warning persons to ensure their masks were on and issuing instructions to social distance, as she urged them to buy quickly and move on.
Although the crowds at Maracas and Las Cuevas were smaller yesterday compared to Sunday, many beachgoers said they had ventured out to get a last-minute sea bath as work resumes today.
At Tyrico beach, there was an increase in the number of beachgoers although it has been closed to vehicular traffic for the past two months following a party back in January.
Close to 10,000 visitors were reported to have been headed to Tobago during last week and this week, prompting concerns that there could be a spike in the virus.