Scoop has an Ethical Paywall
Licence needed for work use Learn More

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Officer Used Unjustified And Excessive Force At Rotorua

The Independent Police Conduct Authority has found that Police used unjustified and excessive force when arresting a man at Rotorua on 13 September 2021.

Two officers, one being Officer A, observed a car being driven erratically and decided to stop it. The car pulled into the carpark of a nearby motel and by the time the officers arrived, it was parked and empty.

Police noted that the car had been reported stolen and, when Mr Z returned to the car, they questioned him about it. Mr Z provided his details and told the officers the car belonged to him. It was also registered to him on the Police database. Officer A then requested the car keys from Mr Z in order to seize the car, but Mr Z refused to hand them over. After a warning, and with Mr Z still refusing to comply, Officer A arrested him for obstruction.

As Officer A attempted to take Mr Z into custody, Mr Z tried to move away. This resulted in Officer A grabbing Mr Z, pushing him against a nearby wall and then delivering a significant elbow strike, followed by several punches to the body and head of Mr Z. The other officer also took hold of Mr Z, who was finally restrained, handcuffed, and placed into the patrol car. The event was captured by a local CCTV camera.

Mr Z was charged with obstruction and resisting arrest, although both charges were withdrawn by Police at Mr Z’s second court appearance.

Initially, under the oversight of the Authority, Police undertook an investigation into the actions of the officers involved. The Authority concluded that the legal analysis underlying the Police conclusions in both the criminal and employment aspects of the case was fundamentally flawed. We conducted an independent investigation.

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading

Are you getting our free newsletter?

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.

The Authority found that Officer A had no legal power in the circumstances to require Mr Z to hand over the keys and therefore that the arrest of Mr Z for obstruction was unlawful.

Because the arrest of Mr Z was unlawful, the subsequent force used by Police to effect that arrest was also unjustified under sections 32, 39, 40 and 48 of the Crimes Act 1961.

The Authority additionally found that, even if the arrest had been lawful, the level of force used by Officer A was disproportionate and unreasonable.

© Scoop Media

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On National Spreading Panic About The Economy

It is a political strategy as old as time. Scare the public with tales of disaster and stampede them into supporting your ideological agenda because they believe There Is No Alternative. Yet, if the NZ economy truly is as “fragile” as PM Christopher Luxon says it is... Then how come New Zealand has enjoyed a double AA+ credit rating from the international rating agencies for so long? If we have truly been in the thrall of incompetent tax, spend and borrow extremists for the past six years, how come our net government debt burden is only in the middling average of OECD countries, and how come our government debt-to-GDP ratio – however you measure it – is less than half the average for the Asia-Pacific region?..


Government: Retiring Chief Of Navy Thanked For His Service

Defence Minister Judith Collins has thanked the Chief of Navy, Rear Admiral David Proctor, for his service as he retires from the Royal New Zealand Navy after 37 years. Rear Admiral Proctor will retire on 16 May to take up an employment opportunity in Australia... More

Labour: Grant Robertson To Retire From Parliament
Labour List MP and former Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Grant Robertson will retire from Parliament next month, and later in the year take up the position of Vice Chancellor of the University of Otago... More

Government: Humanitarian Support For Gaza & West Bank

Winston Peters has announced NZ is providing a further $5M to respond to the extreme humanitarian need in Gaza and the West Bank. “The impact of the Israel-Hamas conflict on civilians is absolutely appalling," he said... More

Government: New High Court Judge Appointed

Judith Collins has announced the appointment of Wellington Barrister Jason Scott McHerron as a High Court Judge. Justice McHerron graduated from the University of Otago with a BA in English Literature in 1994 and an LLB in 1996... More




InfoPages News Channels


Join Our Free Newsletter

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.