Letter of complaint re police conduct on 19 January




January 21, 2013

David Carruthers


Independent Police Conduct Authority



Kia ora Mr Carruthers,

Complaint re police conduct on 19 January

Last Saturday I attended the Anti-Bases Campaign protest outside the Waihopai satellite surveillance station in Blenheim and as a result I’d like the IPCA to investigate two issues which resulted from the protest.

  1. At approximately 1.30pm a group of people from the protest walked down the station driveway with a letter addressed to the station commander. They were stopped by a group of four police who were standing across the driveway. The police said the protest group were not permitted to proceed further whereupon the police were asked to themselves deliver the letter. The outcome was that a police sergeant (I’m told his name is Sergeant John Westen (sp?)) took the letter, screwed it up into a ball and threw it on the ground. It was a childish, provocative action well outside any conceivable police role to ensure protest rights are upheld.
  1. This same police officer was armed with a taser clearly visible on his belt. This appears to be a clear breach of police standard operating procedures which state that –

The EMI device (taser) is not to be carried by members rostered for duty at demonstrations”

I look forward to hearing from you.

Yours sincerely,

John Minto




Global Peace and Justice Auckland

One Response to Letter of complaint re police conduct on 19 January

  1. Carol Winstanley says:

    Thanks for putting the letter out for public viewing and comment. It is extremely disturbing information on police behaviour; both as a gross disregard of the rights of the community to protest, and also a police attitude that suggests a perception of protest being an attack on the police force itself. Sign of the times?

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