22 Feb 2012

Ethnic advisory board planned after tourist arrest row

7:32 am on 22 February 2012

The police in Hamilton have announced an ethnic advisory board will be set up to directly advise the area's district commander.

The announcement follows an internal inquiry into the arrest of an Asian tourist which cleared Hamilton officers of misconduct.

Naiju Li, 56, suffered a dislocated elbow and a cut to her cheek during her arrest after she confronted a towing company about her vehicle being towed.

She accused officers of injuring her while using excessive force in arresting her.

Mrs Li was charged with disorderly behaviour and minor assault, but was let off with a warning.

Superintendent Win van der Velde says while the internal inquiry cleared the police of any wrongdoing, part of the reason the situation escalated was the language barrier between officers and Mrs Li.

He says a board of volunteers of different ethnicities will be appointed to advise him.