Auckland man arrested under new family harm legislation, charged with strangulation

A police insignia.
Photo credit: Newshub.

Police have made their first arrest under new family violence legislation, charging an Auckland man with strangulation.

The man was arrested on December 3 and appeared at Counties Manukau District Court on December 4. He will reappear later in December.

Strangulation is a new offence and carries a maximum sentence of seven years in prison.

Police spokesperson Detective Senior Sergeant Ross Ellwood said the first arrest for the new offence was significant considering it's been such a short time since it was introduced on Monday.

"The fact it has been used so soon after being introduced shows how important this new legislation will be in preventing family harm and keeping our community safe," he said.

"We know that strangulation is a serious risk marker in family harm situations."

The new law also allows victims to give video statements in court, which the victim in this case chose to do.

"This new way of recording a victim's statement has been a success," Det Snr Sgt Ellwood said.

"We have seen a vastly improved victim experience, a large reduction in the time taken to take a statement, and a significant improvement in the quality of the evidence police are gathering."

Police previously had to apply to court to allow the interview statements to be played on behalf of victims.