Nitro Circus brawl caught on camera
Sat, 02 Feb 2013 6:03p.m.
By Ayeesha Holder
Police are being accused of brutality after an incident in central Auckland.
One witness alleges two members of the Nitro Circus stunt group bottled a member of the public and hit him in the head with a push scooter.
He says police arriving on the scene pepper sprayed the bleeding victim, handcuffed him and then shoved him face first into the road.
The police actions were captured on video.
The Nitro Circus is in New Zealand on tour.
Early Friday morning, witnesses claim they were involved in a vicious altercation on Fort St in central Auckland.
One witness, who does not want to be identified, recorded what happened.
“I whipped out my camera just as one of the Nitro Circus guys threw a bottle at this guy, at the Kiwi man, and then a guy on a scooter just came up and did a cheap shot and whacked him on the head with the scooter,” he says.
But it was what happened afterwards that shocked onlookers even more. Police arriving on the scene immediately pepper sprayed the bleeding victim.
The man was put on the ground and handcuffed and then, as he was led away, pushed face first into the road.
In the aftermath the witnesses were told to move away by police. Though they were keen to tell police what they had seen, they were ordered away.
“The police didn't once come and take a statement from us,” says the witness. “It was like the Nitro PR team had the cops pretty sewn up and were only getting statements from them.”
Witnesses brought the video to 3 News because of their concerns for the handcuffed man.
3 News contacted Auckland police and they say they were "called to attend a fight/disturbance".
“On arrival they encountered a bloodied man in possession of a broken bottle who was abusing and threatening people,” says Inspector Andrew Coster. “When asked several times to put it down, he refused. Consequently he was restrained by officers and arrested for obstruction. He was later released.”
Kiwi Nitro Circus member Luke Smith had his jaw broken in a violent incident in central Auckland earlier the same night. He's riding at North Harbour Stadium tonight with that injury and a broken heel he suffered on this tour.
Representatives of the Nitro Circus say they are currently unaware of the incident.
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6/02/2013 1:41:43 p.m.
Seriously though, does anything get done about these things. That guy was assaulted when he was thrown on the road, no "if, buts or maybes" its just wrong. Who do you go to in these instances? There was two officers and the guy was hand-cuffed why did they have to throw him on the road like that? It makes me sick.
5/02/2013 12:39:56 a.m.
I'm so glad someone got this on tape. For too long the police have been living under their own rules and they know that most cases get thrown out of court so they do their best to punish you while in their custody. It's really sad. It would take a murder for me to ever want to call them
4/02/2013 1:27:25 p.m.
sad that the police are not being impartial and not listening to all witnesses. they better not try that on the wrong people or they will get hurt badly
4/02/2013 1:23:47 p.m.
Drunk rambling witnesses who captured "everything" but the media only shows us one side? Hmmm where's my jump to conclusions mat?
4/02/2013 2:34:21 a.m.
Another victory for the incompetent boys in blue. The amount of dumbasses in the force has reached ridiculous levels. I mean if these guys are given power to do the policing in the city they should at least be educated! Most cops I know in NZ are on a power trip trying to prove that they are big tough boys by issuing tickets to poor hardworking citizens! The police have got it wrong in so many ways it's not even funny anymore. Thankfully I left NZ, but you locals should protest and ask for serious reforms.
3/02/2013 6:26:52 p.m.
police will do what they want without consequences! my partner was seriously assulted by 2 policemen (we have this on video!) and HE'S the one in trouble even when he is innocent of what they accuse him of. disgusting behaviour. and these are the people who are there to protect?
3/02/2013 1:48:24 p.m.
As an ex Police Officer from the UK - I am shocked by the actions of these two NZ officers, YES use force when its needed but from what I saw on the TV this was clearly not needed - and the police statement ....well perhaps they should have watched the Video first, I expect they will be suspended and then some backtracking by the NZ Police. Its not good to see things like this when the vast majority of NZ Police do a FANTASTIC job.
3/02/2013 12:42:55 p.m.
Wow! Another case of the NZ Police not reading the situation and pepper spraying the wrong person. Bit too close to the cops pepper spraying a nine year old in Dargaville. And Auckland guy you clearly have not experienced the wrong side of the law enforcers. Yes you are right in that we need the police for our safety but we NEED better!
3/02/2013 11:30:58 a.m.
The police getting it so wrong again sick of them thinking there better than the rest of us, as for Nitro circus go home thugs hope you bike loses speed on the up ramp!!!
3/02/2013 10:10:33 a.m.
Auckland Guy wrote:
James. Remove the number 1 from your telephone and make sure you never need the Police for help. The day you're on the receiving end of trouble and you need their help, remember your childish rant of "question authority" .
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