16 Apr 2015

No need to pull out taser - IPCA

3:27 pm on 16 April 2015

A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority (IPCA) has found police were not justified in drawing out a taser after a man had been arrested and handcuffed.

generic police vest

Photo: RNZ / Diego Opatowski

The findings, released today, relate to a lengthy police chase that led to the arrest of two men who had crashed a car on State Highway 1 in Waikato and fled on foot.

One of the offenders resisted arrest, escaped over a fence and was found choking a police dog that had been set on him.

The authority said officers were justified in using the dog, firing a warning shot and using other techniques while arresting him.

However, it condemned the way police presented a taster after the man was handcuffed.

While the taser was not fired, the IPCA said it did not need to be drawn, given the offender was no longer resisting arrest and seven other officers were at the scene to restrain him if needed.

Waikato Police Superintendent Bruce Bird said he was happy to accept the findings.

He said the report confirmed that officers had to make tough decisions in extremely challenging and dangerous environments.

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