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Home / Publications and Media / 2023 media releases

Injury caused by poor restraint technique during arrest

20 June 2023

The Independent Police Conduct Authority has found that a woman’s arm was broken during her arrest as a result of an officer using a poor restraint technique.

Police were called to a disturbance in central Hamilton in the early hours of 9 July 2022, and a number of people were arrested. Having arrested a woman, an officer changed his grip while restraining her. This resulted in the woman’s arm being broken.

The Authority has found that this injury was not caused by excessive force, but by a poor restraint technique by the officer. Police in Hamilton have subsequently reviewed its practice in relation to the use of restraint holds.

The Authority Chair Judge Kenneth Johnston KC said: “While we accept that the officer in this case did not intend to break the woman’s arm, his poor technique was the cause of her injury. Officers on occasion need to use force in performing their duties, but they need always to do so with care. Their prime role is to protect the public – which includes those they are arresting.”

Public Report 
Poor restraint technique causes broken arm (PDF 280 KB)


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