Auckland $100k cash drop turns violent, attendee stuck after driving from Palmerston North

A crowd in Auckland turned angry and violent on Saturday when a promotional event did not go the way they expected.

Work gear company The Safety Warehouse promised to fire $100,000 into a ticketed crowd of people who'd attended in the hope of catching some cash. But many people were left with no cash and only injuries.

They were sold a dream. Wads of money were fired into an eager crowd keen to get their hands on some cold hard cash. But things turned nightmarish.

"What do you think, we're gonna beg for it? We're not gonna beg for money," one person can be heard saying in a video. 

Lee Peri told Newshub that "suddenly the crowds [began] attacking The Safety Warehouse promo vehicle". Its rear window smashed as the angry crowd swarmed the car. 

"[They were] throwing bottles, running in front of it, kicking it, smashing it, booting it - people falling over in front of it," said Peri. 

Peri said it's because they were promised $100,000 in cash. But what they mostly got were discount vouchers made to look like $5 notes. 

"You can't control probably desperate people that probably were looking forward to having a bit of cash in their pocket, especially around this time."

The cash drop was promoted all over social media with people told to register for a free ticket and be into grab their share.

"If The Safety Warehouse genuinely wanted to give back to the community they would've not just made people scuttle to grab a mix of real and fake cash," says Green MP Ricardo Menendez March.

"It's an incredibly dehumanising way to do 'charity' and they simply would have handed that money straight to the hands of the community."

Like Wayne Lynch who drove all the way from Palmerston North in the hope of a windfall. 

"We used our money to come up here for this hoping to win enough money to get us back and to pay for our son's surgery."

He's now stuck in Auckland with nothing but anger. 

"I ended up on the ground with quite a few people on top of me and being quite small, it felt like a truck had landed on top of me."

The Safety Warehouse wouldn't go on camera but says it's disappointed the event turned violent. It says $100,000 worth of cash was in fact thrown into the crowd alongside hundreds of discount vouchers designed to look like $5 notes.

Three Safety Warehouse employees were injured - one was taken to hospital with glass in their eye.

Auckland Live director Robbie Macrae says it "issued a venue hireage agreement for this event, based on the event promoter's application meeting all our requirements".