There are tons of melodramatic love songs where the singer is screeching about the extreme lengths they'd go to prove their love for someone and/or how much that feeling should mean to them and how badly they'd want to get it back. People talk about climbing any mountain, searching to the depths of the earth, walking hundreds if not thousands of miles or crossing seas to get to their beloved. But how many of them actually do those things?
And while Dale McLaughlin may not be a world-renowned musical artist, he did live out a love song by hopping on his jet ski and crossing the Irish Sea in order to see his girlfriend, Jessica Radcliffe, on the Isle of Man flouting local COVID-19 lockdown orders to do so.
The North Ayrshire, Scotland native had never ridden a jet ski before but conjured up a clever idea to bypass travel restrictions so he could be with Jessica.
He embarked a four-and-a-half-hour journey from the Isle of Whithorn to get to Ramsey, Isle of Man where his main squeeze was. He had confessed to authorities he illegally entered the area. The Isle of Man had implemented COVID-19 restrictions and authorities were not amused by the man's demonstration of love.
Absolute legend of a Scotsman crosses Irish Sea to see girlfriend and gets jailed...on a JET SKI HE BOUGHT FOR THIS SOLE PURPOSE. He also got covid tested before his trip and legally tried to apply several times. Someone snapped a photo of him landing. Isle of Man = snitches den pic.twitter.com/9gUWLFFECD— The Penguin Official (@ThePenguinOffi1) December 15, 2020
If you're a non-resident of the area, you need to acquire a special permit to visit, something that Dale failed to do. He argued that he had previously visited the island to perform some roofing work and that he had self-isolated there back in September. It was during this time he met Jessica.
He continued by arguing he had tried several times to obtain a legal visitation permit but was rejected each time, so he ultimately decided to take matters into his own hands because love knows no bounds. Whether it's not certain he said that or not, it's implied given the nature of his actions.
He also invested a significant amount of money into the endeavor.
Last Thursday, Dale Mclaughlan bought a Jet Ski.— The New York Times (@nytimes) December 15, 2020
On Monday, the 28-year-old Scotsman was sentenced to four weeks in jail.
What happened on the three days in between may be one of the more unusual instances of rule-flouting during the pandemic. https://t.co/Le4jSvRrr9
After being turned down the legal route on more than one occasion, Dale purchased a jet ski, which he rode for 40 minutes to cross the Irish Ski to get to the Isle of Man. After parking his Jet Ski and making it to shore at around 1 pm, he then walked the 15 miles from Ramsey to Douglas, where Jessica resides.
Dale's lawyer contended that his client was suffering from depression, which is what spurred his decision to purchase a jet ski and ride it across a large body of water and then walk 15 miles to go and see her, despite never riding on a vehicle like that before.
Police learned of Dale's arrival on the island after they visited Jessica's home in Douglas.
McLaughlan told them he resided there as well and later in the day, the two went out to a nightclub, which was flouting local social distancing protocols. They arrested the man on Sunday after verifying his identity and address.
The roofer also stated that he had taken a COVID test some four days before traveling to the Island of Man and that had come back negative. He informed authorities he was willing to take another test, which, according to The Daily Mail, has also come back negative.