Traffic control bosses said staff in the area had pistols and a severed shotgun pointed at them during work last Friday.
Traffic manager Liam Harvey told Newstalk ZB this afternoon that road workers reported the incident to police.
“We had the police come to us. [Friday] In the evening, we received statements from everyone involved,” Harvey said.
He confirmed that these statements are direct accounts. Harvey also said police had conducted some investigations, but said nothing beyond that.
Following attacks from opposition parties and some residents over crime in the area, Prime Minister Chris Hipkins said earlier this week that there was no direct explanation for the incident.
“Reports of guns being pulled at checkpoints have so far come only from third or fourth parties,” Hipkins said at a press conference.
In an interview with Newstalk ZB’s Heather Du Plessis-Allan, Police Minister Stuart Nash was asked if he admitted there had been a problem with crime in Hawke’s Bay.
He said he understands people are “uneasy”.
He said he “doesn’t doubt” that people with guns pointed their guns at the checkpoint, but he wasn’t convinced by the supposed lack of evidence.
Nash grew increasingly frustrated and asked du Plessis Alain why he “sticked to this.”
“I completely understand that they are really, really concerned about the behavior of a very small group of our community who are behaving in a completely anti-social and completely unacceptable way. I will,” said Nash.
“That’s why the police are arresting anyone they find or have evidence of being involved in illegal activity. [people] committed an illegal act. ”
Harvey said the crew felt “disturbed, anxious and nervous” after the incident, and one of them asked to take a “stress leave.”
He said of the authorities’ denial that the event had taken place, “It’s a little frustrating considering it actually happened.”
East Coast Traffic’s Ryan Lawson said Newsroom staff face abuse every day.
“Honestly, it was such a terrifying moment that the crew had to walk away.”
On Monday, Police Commissioner Andrew Koster said he felt police had the situation under control and that the number of law and order issues was actually lower than usual. I said I was on my way.
In the region, the cyclone added 145 to the already 770 frontline police staff.
Koster also said reports of crime had dropped to normal levels.
Napier Mayor Kirsten Weisz told RNZ that regardless of the level of reporting, people were terrified and wanted more people on the ground. He said crimes could be underreported.
Meanwhile, local residents started talking to me. new zealand herald They say they want to see the military take over roadblocks they put up to prevent looting of damaged property. It has even been suggested that
Act leader David Seymour said the prime minister should order the military to assist the police.
“Government’s first duty is to keep people safe. East Coast people should listen to their frightened pleas for help.”
Seymour said more than 600 police were sent to the Congressional protest, but only 100 were sent to Hawke’s Bay.
“Being present in the worst affected areas will make a huge difference to the suffering communities. They are exhausted and don’t have to stay up all night at their own checkpoints.”
https://www.odt.co.nz/news/national/roadworkers-dispute-pms-claim-over-gun-incident Road workers challenge prime minister’s allegations over gun incident