Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


Police failings in handling of 2005 car crash investigation

14 March 2014

Authority finds failings by Police in handling of 2005 car crash investigation

An Independent Police Conduct Authority report has found that multiple failings by Southern District Police enabled the criminal conduct of two officers to go undiscovered following a car crash in Alexandra involving a Police officer and a 17-year-old. However, the Authority found no evidence of a conspiracy amongst the officers overseeing the crash investigation.

The Authority today released the results of its independent investigation into the Police handling of the crash investigation and its aftermath.

On 14 July 2005 a car crash occurred on a country road on the outskirts of Alexandra involving an unmarked Police Ute driven by Senior Constable Neil Ford and a Honda car driven by Shane Cribb. Constable Dairne Cassidy was appointed to investigate the crash and Mr Cribb was subsequently charged with careless driving causing injury. He was convicted in March 2006. Since January 2006 the Authority has received a number of letters alleging that Police unfairly and unjustly attached the blame for the crash to Mr Cribb – either to pervert the course of justice in order to protect a fellow officer, or through an incompetent investigation that lacked thoroughness. After a rehearing was ordered in 2008 on the basis of new evidence, Police decided not to offer any evidence and Mr Cribb’s conviction was overturned.

Subsequently the Police carried out criminal investigations which resulted in Senior Constable Ford being convicted of perjury and Constable Cassidy being convicted of attempting to pervert the course of justice. Both officers are no longer employed by the New Zealand Police.

In releasing today’s report the Independent Police Conduct Authority Chair, Judge Sir David Carruthers said the Authority’s investigation found multiple failings by the Police, including a lack of adequate supervision and leadership and a failure to critically examine evidence and remedy deficiencies identified during the investigation. Police also failed to address concerns about the crash investigation in a timely manner.

“These inactions resulted in Police not uncovering the truth about the crash for over two years, causing much undue stress to Mr Cribb and his supporters. Furthermore the mishandling of the crash investigation also greatly damaged the reputation of Southern District Police,” Sir David said.

“The investigation also considered allegations of a Police ‘cover-up’. However the Authority has not found any evidence that there was a conspiracy amongst the Police officers overseeing the crash investigation.”

The Authority notes that the conduct of the officers involved in this case predates the Code of Conduct procedure introduced by Police following the enactment of the Policing Act 2008. The former twelve month time limit on instituting disciplinary proceedings therefore applies and consequently the Authority makes no recommendations for further action against the officers concerned. The Authority also notes that since this incident Police have improved their supervision and peer-review processes.

The release of today’s report comes more than eight-and-a-half years since the car crash. In concluding its investigation the Authority found that Police individual and collective failures in addressing concerns about the crash investigation caused unacceptable and unjustified delays.

The Authority itself also notes that it contributed to this delay and has recently changed its processes to ensure that it completes investigations more quickly than it has done in the past.

A copy of the Authority’s report is available here.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Scoop Business: Alex Swney Pleads Guilty To $2.5M Fraud Charge

Alex Swney, former chief executive of the Auckland city centre business association Heart of the City, has pleaded guilty to dishonestly using documents to obtain $2.5 million. More>>

ALSO:

Petrol Burns Prices: Second Consecutive Quarterly Fall For CPI

The consumers price index (CPI) fell 0.3 percent in the March 2015 quarter, following a 0.2 percent fall in the December 2014 quarter, Statistics New Zealand said today. The last time the CPI showed two consecutive quarterly falls was in the December 1998 and March 1999 quarters. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: NZ Broadcasters Launch Battle Against Global Mode ISPs

New Zealand broadcasters have confirmed they’ve launched legal proceedings against internet service providers who give customers’ access to “global mode”, which allows customers access to offshore online content, claiming it breaches the local content providers’ copyright. More>>

ALSO:

Sanford: Closure Of Christchurch Mussel Processing Plant Confirmed

The decision comes after a period of consultation with the 232 staff employed at the Riccarton site, who were told on 9 April that Sanford was considering the future of mussel processing in Christchurch. Recent weather patterns had impacted on natural spat (offspring) supply... More>>

ALSO:

Price Of Cheese: Dairy Product Prices Fall To The Lowest This Year

Dairy product prices fell in the latest GlobalDairyTrade auction, hitting the lowest level in the 2015 auctions so far, as prices for milk powder and butter slid amid concern about the outlook for commodities. More>>

ALSO:

Houston, We Have An Air Route: Air New Zealand To Fly Direct To The Heart Of Texas

Air New Zealand will fly its completely refitted Boeing 777-200 aircraft between Auckland and Houston up to five times a week opening up the state of Texas as well as popular nearby tourist states such as Louisiana and Florida. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Reserve Bank’s Spencer Calls On Govt To Rethink Housing Tax

The Reserve Bank has urged the government to take another look at a capital gains tax on investment in housing, allow increased high-density development and cut red tape for planning consents to address an over-heated Auckland property market. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news