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Mana Whanonga Pirihimana Motuhake

Unnecessary use of force by a Police employee

16 November 2020

The Authority oversaw a Police investigation into an allegation a Police employee assaulted a detainee as they were being released from custody. The employee was captured on camera grabbing the detainee around the throat. Sufficient force was used to leave marks on the detainee's neck.

The employee was charged with assault and acquitted following a Judge-alone trial. It was found that the employee reasonably believed the detainee posed an immediate threat, and that their response amounted to self-defence. It was not proved beyond reasonable doubt that the employee's actions were unreasonable, excessive or disproportionate.

A Police employment process was completed following the conclusion of Court proceedings and it was determined that the employee's use of force was contrary to the Police Code of Conduct and unjustified.

Appropriate steps to address the employee's actions were taken at the conclusion of the Police investigation. The Authority accepts the findings and the outcome of the Police investigation.

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