Quebec City police arrest COVID-19 patient for defying quarantine

Police in Quebec City (Steve Jolicoeur/Radio-Canada)

Quebec City police have arrested a woman, who has tested positive for the coronavirus, for being out in the city's Limoilou neighbourhood despite being under a quarantine order.

The woman, who is potentially contagious, was arrested at around 2 p.m. ET Friday while out for a stroll, by order of the regional public health authority. 

"This is the first time that we have executed this type of warrant," said police spokesperson Sandra Dion.

The woman co-operated with police and was transported to hospital, according to Radio-Canada. It is not yet clear if she will face charges.

The regional health agency, the CIUSSS de la Capitale-Nationale, said in a statement police were asked to intervene.

Quebec's Public Health Act gives authorities broad powers during a public health emergency if someone jeopardizes the health and safety of others. The province declared a 10-day public health emergency — the first in its history — on Saturday.

"We will use all the required and necessary measures at our disposal to ensure compliance," the health agency said. 

The number COVID-19 cases in Canada surpassed 1,000 on Friday, and there are more than 242,000 across the globe.

In Quebec, there are 139 confirmed cases and one death. That number is expected to rise in the coming days.