An Australian man repeatedly escaped his quarantine hotel by climbing down a ladder so that he could visit his girlfriend, local media outlets reported.
After flying from Sydney to Perth in late July, Yusuf Karakaya, 31, was supposed to spend 14 days in supervised isolation. Western Australia, where Perth is located, is one of several states requiring visitors from other parts of the country with higher coronavirus caseloads to enter quarantine for two weeks — typically in a hotel with round-the-clock security.
After arriving at the hotel, however, Karakaya didn’t stick around for long. According to the Australian Broadcasting Corp., he managed to sneak onto the roof and down to the street on his first attempt, although it wasn’t clear exactly how. An accomplice picked him up, and they returned with a ladder that he used to climb back into his hotel room. For the next three days, he used the ladder to leave his hotel room without being detected, then return hours later.
At one point, hotel staff were tipped off about the ladder and removed it, the ABC reported. Karakaya and his accomplice replaced it with another ladder.
Karakaya was found hiding in his girlfriend’s wardrobe when police came to arrest him, according to Western Australia Today. He claimed that it was her birthday and he would have gotten in trouble if he didn’t see her.
Karakaya was given a six-month jail sentence but will serve only one month in addition to the month he has already spent in jail, according to the ABC. His lawyer claimed that Western Australia’s quarantine rules were confusing but acknowledged that climbing out the hotel window was not a smart thing to do.