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Convent reviews security after rooftop protest

By Matthew Ramirez and Brian Reyes

Security at The Convent is being reviewed after a man climbed onto the roof yesterday in an apparent protest about homelessness.

The man gained access the roof of the building, the official residence of the Governor, and held up a sign that read "Shelterwise - helping the homeless".

He called out to passers-by in Convent Place, saying more should be done for homeless people.

Police cordoned off the area and stopped traffic as officers climbed onto the roof to try and talk the man down.

After about an hour, the man made his way down and was arrested, although not before ringing the bell over the entrance to King’s Chapel.

On Wednesday night, police confirmed the man, aged 42, had been arrested on suspicion of obstructing police, making a disturbance and breaching Covid-19 regulations.

As this edition went to press, he had yet to be charged.

The incident raised questions about how the man was able to climb, in broad daylight, to the roof of a sensitive building in the centre of town.

Although it was not clear how he gained access to the roof, there are scaffolds nearby where adjacent buildings are under repair.

“He did not enter the interior of the building,” a Convent spokesman told the Chronicle.

“The GDP and RGP both attended the incident and the person was subsequently detained and arrested.”

“The Governor was out of the building on official business at the time.”

“A review of the incident will be conducted to ensure that any necessary additional security measures are put in place.”

The Gibraltar Fire and Rescue Service and a GHA ambulance were also at the scene during the incident.