NSW's Covid-19 daily press conference came to a bizarre halt on Monday when a man interrupted proceedings declaring he was the "prime creator of this Earth".
After Police Commissioner Mick Fuller had explained exercise restrictions of the two-week lockdown for Sydney and surrounding areas, the bearded man butted into proceedings ahead of Seven reporter Robert Ovadia, telling Commissioner Fuller he had a question for him.
"Did you receive my notice of cease and desist?" he asks.
A baffled Commissioner Fuller tells the man it's not his time before he begins to approach the lectern and attempts to hand Commissioner Fuller a document.
"Don't come near me," Commissioner Fuller says in a moment of confusion.
"You were served a notice of cease and desist. Last year, and I captured everything. I am the prime creator of this Earth!" the man barks.
ABC cuts away from live press conference
The incident unfolded live on ABC News 24 with host Joe O'Brien seen gesturing to producers to cut away from the press conference.
Twice he attempted to return to the press conference but the mayhem ensued, with O'Brien finally conceding it is "too difficult" to proceed.
The bearded man, with long, shoulder-length hair, can be seen being walked away from the press conference by a police officer and member of security.
He can be seen continuing to rant as he is taken away from the press conference.
NSW Police confirmed to Yahoo News Australia the man was not arrested but will be handed a $1000 Penalty Infringement Notice.
NSW Police tweet met with intense backlash
The incident caused a stir online, with many dumbfounded over what they'd just witnessed.
Some speculated that the man responsible was Peter Hore, a renowned prankster known for his disruptive stunts, however some refuted the suggestion, saying the man appeared too young.
A NSW Police tweet following the incident generated swift backlash after they attempted to joke about the man's 'excuse' to leave home.
Disrupting a press conference is not reasonable excuse to leave home - even if you claim to be the prime creator of this earth.
Police to issue the man with $1000 PIN.https://t.co/qNEDhBJvTA
— NSW Police Force (@nswpolice) June 28, 2021
"Disrupting a press conference is not reasonable excuse to leave home - even if you claim to be the prime creator of this earth. Police to issue the man with $1000 PIN," the post read.
Immediately, dozens of Twitter users called out NSW Police for the insensitive wording in their message.
"How about not mocking and financially punishing someone who is clearly unwell? Could you instead offer support and resources?" one person wrote.
"Fined for mental illness? It's a sad place we've got to," a man added.
"They seem like they're a vulnerable person and already marginalised. This is awful, you bullies," another said.
Earlier in the press conference, Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced NSW had recorded a further 18 locally acquired Covid-19 cases.
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