11 Jul 2020

Fourth escape from isolation: Person breaks window to get out of Auckland hotel

5:53 pm on 11 July 2020

A person in their 60s broke a window and escaped from an Auckland isolation hotel last night, the fourth escape from a facility in a week.

Auckland managed isolation facility, Waipuna Hotel in Mt Wellington.

Auckland managed isolation facility, Waipuna Hotel in Mt Wellington. Photo: Google Maps

Air Commodore Darryn Webb, Head of Managed Isolation and Quarantine, said police are investigating after the person left the Waipuna Hotel in Mt Wellington late last night.

They are now under guard at the facility.

In a statement, the police say they are working with the Ministry of Health to manage the care of the person.

"This may take some time whilst a suitable plan is put in place to ensure the individual's health needs are met."

The police say the risk to the community from the person's escape is low.

They are not saying at this stage if the person is a man or a woman.

Webb said the individual tested negative for their day-3 test, after arriving in New Zealand on 4 July. They are symptom free.

Webb said the person broke and climbed out of a window in their room and climbed perimeter fencing to get away, and was last seen at the facility at about 11pm.

"They were picked up by police at about 12.15am and immediately returned to the facility where they were put under guard. The individual had allegedly knocked on three residents' doors while outside the facility. The first property did not answer. The second property called 111. At the third property the individual apparently spoke to a couple."

On Tuesday, a man in his 30s escaped managed isolation from Auckland's Stamford Plaza. He spent 20 minutes at Countdown in Victoria St where he went to buy toiletries.

The man, who is a New Zealand citizen and arrived from New Delhi on 3 July, will be summoned to appear in court at a later date charged under the Covid-19 Public Health Response Act. He left the facility for 70 minutes in total and will face either six months imprisonment or a $4000 fine.

On Thursday, a man in his 50s fled the Distinction Hotel in the Hamilton suburb of Te Rapa to visit the liquor store about 500m away. He left the hotel after cutting through a 1.8m fence around the facility about 6.30pm, and left for about half an hour.

And last Saturday, a 43-year-old woman who climbed a fence to escape from a managed isolation facility in Auckland was charged under the Covid-19 Public Health Response Act. The woman arrived from Brisbane on 27 June and returned a negative Covid-19 test three days later.

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