28 Feb 2022

Dunedin students claiming to have Covid coughed on officers - police

10:46 am on 28 February 2022

Police officers called to a large student party in Dunedin on Friday were coughed on by party-goers claiming to have Covid-19.

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Photo: RNZ / Cole Eastham-Farrelly

About 100 people attended the Castle Street party, including many who had recently left isolation or should have been isolating due to Covid-19, Senior Sergeant Anthony Bond said.

"This is disappointing that these students weren't abiding by the self-isolation rules, and should have been at home."

Officers had already visited the address earlier.

"Police had been to visit earlier in the night and the occupants had said they weren't having a party, this turned out to be false," Bond said.

Police shut the party down about 10.30pm.

"Police arrested two males while at the address," Bond said.

"A 19-year-old male was arrested for offensive language and disorderly behaviour, he was released with a warning as was Covid positive and referred to the proctor.

"While this male was being arrested a few aggressive males came over coughing on police and saying they were Covid positive, police tried to grab them but they ran off, follow-up enquiries are continuing to identify them with CCTV and speak to them about this disgusting behaviour.

"An 18-year-old male was arrested after trying to steal a police officer's hat, he will also be referred to the proctor."

Officers patrolling the student quarter on Saturday night reported it was a quiet night, possibly due to the colder weather.

"There were a few small gatherings but only got to 25 people maximum," Bond said.

"This was what should have been happening throughout O-Week and a good note for police to end the week on."

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