Police acknowledge the findings of the Independent Police Conduct Authority in relation to an officer’s response to a Police car being stolen in Murupara in October 2017.
The areas for improvement highlighted by the IPCA have been addressed with the officers involved which have included an employment investigation.
Murupara is like a lot of other rural communities where staff work by themselves a lot of the time.
The work can be quite challenging at times and due to the remote locations in a critical incident immediate assistance is not always available.
The decision making of the officer involved in this incident was driven by a desire to keep himself and the community safe.
However his decision to routinely carry a firearm did not follow Police policy.
All officers are able to carry a firearm after a risk assessment of the situation faced.
We acknowledge the correct process was not followed by the officer involved or the supervising officer when deciding to routinely carry a firearm.
All those staff involved in the process that enabled this to happen have been spoken to and the policy around carrying firearms has been reinforced with them.
The officer is now based in Rotorua.
A review was also undertaken and areas for improvement were identified.
Those areas for improvement included the understanding of some Police policies by the staff involved and the initial employment investigation that followed the matter.
The review also identified Police were working closely with the community in Murupara and are grateful for their ongoing support as we work together to keep the community safe,” said Superintendent Andy McGregor
“Police in New Zealand are not routinely armed.
We enjoy a unique relationship with the public based on high levels of trust and confidence, allowing policing by consent,” said Superintendent McGregor.