Automotive

The Auckland police officer justified the shooting of the man who drove the car.

The IPCA has learned that a police officer in his defense justified the shooting of a man.  (File photo)

Alden Williams / Things.

The IPCA has learned that a police officer in his defense justified the shooting of a man. (File photo)

An Auckland police officer who fired three shots at a man trying to escape from police was working in self-defense.

The results say the officer “justified” the shooting because the man turned his car directly toward her in January 2019.

Police were called to the North Coast on the north coast, where a man opened fire. The man was speeding in a residential alley on the wrong side of a road, where three dog handlers tried to stop his car, and rotated it 180 degrees to avoid speeding on the road.

An officer stepped forward to stop the man, came out and pointed his gun at him, challenging him to surrender.

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Instead of stopping, the man approached the officer from less than two meters away, and the officer fired three shots at the man.

Shortly afterwards, police forced the man’s car off the road and he was arrested by armed criminal officers.

Police Eagle helicopter footage and forensic evidence initially indicated the officer would be fired when the man walked away from him, but the IPCA acknowledged that the officer was allowed to fire in self-defense. ۔

The officer thought he was going to run out, was afraid he would get out of the way on time and fired to force the man to walk away.

“Under the circumstances, it had no other strategy available to protect itself,” the authority said.

The officer fired at the man three times.  (File photo)

Ricky Wilson / Things.

The officer fired at the man three times. (File photo)

The authority found a discrepancy between the officer’s perception of when he fired the shot and his actual position, which can be explained by the speed of events and the pressure of the situation.

“Because the timeframe was too tight, the officer probably fired shots a second earlier in response to the vehicle’s position.

“He fired without processing in his mind that the car had now passed behind him,” said Judge Colin Doherty, the authority’s chairman.

Superintendent of Police Naila Hassan said the incident was a very unstable and dangerous situation and that the man posed a great danger to the public on the road.

“It highlights the rapid and often dangerous nature of policing. Our staff go to work every day to keep the public safe and often use it to their own detriment.”

Hassan said the officer involved was a “highly valued member” of the staff.

The IPCA also investigated the man’s complaint that he was assaulted during his arrest. Doherty said the watchman was satisfied it was unproven.

The man was charged in connection with the incident and in October 2019 was sentenced to two years and three months in prison.

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