Response IPCA report Morrinsville shooting
Police accepts the findings of the Independent Police Conduct Authority that officers were justified in returning fire at a wanted man who, armed with a military style firearm, repeatedly shot at Police.
The 36-year-old man then went on the run and was arrested 12 days later following an extensive search spanning multiple Police districts.
The incident took place in Morrinsville shortly after midnight on the 13th of August 2017, after Police attempted to stop a speeding driver.
Following a brief pursuit the fleeing driver stopped on Kuranui Road, produced a semi-automatic rifle and fired a volley of shots at the officer sitting in his patrol car.
The officer had to duck down below the dashboard to avoid being hit and reverse rapidly.
The shots continued and the officer was forced to retreat into a nearby farm driveway to seek cover.
Two other officers nearby responded to assist their colleague and were also shot at.
They were forced to abandon their patrol car and seek cover behind a nearby tree.
The authority notes the urgent circumstances of the event, and that the officers were lawfully justified in firing shots at the man in defence of themselves and each other.
Waikato District Commander Superintendent Bruce Bird says the officers involved acted courageously in exceptional circumstances.
“No one should ever be shot at or face a situation as dangerous as this as they carry out their job, it shows the lengths our brave officers go to in order to keep the community safe.
“It is simply due to their quick thinking that this didn’t result in serious injury or death.
“I would like to commend the bravery and courage of the three officers involved in this life threatening situation,” he says.