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Home / Outcomes / 2024 Summaries of Police Investigations

Entry into Christchurch dwelling and force used on occupant unjustified

5 March 2023

The Authority oversaw a Police investigation into a complaint relating to officer conduct during a disorder event in January 2023. Allegations included that the officers unlawfully searched two males, unlawfully entered an address, and used excess force on two occasions. The complaint also alleged that officers failed to advise the owner that they had pepper sprayed his dog.

Police concluded that the search of the two males on the street and the entry to the address were lawful, and the force used on the obstructive occupant and the dog were justified.

While the Authority agrees that the search of the males on the street was lawful, and that the use of force on the dog was justified, it found the entry to the address was unlawful, and therefore the force used on the occupant was unjustified. It also found the officer should have attempted to notify the owner that his dog had been pepper sprayed.

Neither Police nor the Authority could reach a conclusion in relation to the other allegation of excess force. This was due to a lack of evidence resulting from the complainant and the male declining to engage further with Police or the Authority.

The Authority acknowledge the grounds on which submissions were made by Police, but do not agree with those submissions.

IPCA: 23-16396

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