Police have charged a 15-year-old boy with unlawfully taking a car and may lay further charges over a crash which left one teenager critically injured.
The car crashed into a power pole on Auckland's North Shore shortly after midnight on Tuesday, less than a minute after police started pursuing it as it had been driving erratically. It crashed near Wairau and Shakespeare roads.
The 15-year-old front seat passenger was critically injured and a second passenger, aged 13, is in Starship hospital with moderate injuries on Wednesday. The 15-year-old driver has minor injuries.
Inspector Shanan Gray said on Wednesday that officers were shocked by the age of those involved and have spoken with the boys' parents, but wouldn't say what the nature of the discussion was.
Mr Gray said the serious crash unit is investigating, along with detectives. The Independent Police Conduct Authority has been informed.
Police said such incidents are fast-moving and unpredictable, so officers always face a difficult balance between their duty to enforce the law and their duty to protect life.