A woman in Browns Bay who reportedly cut the tape off a playground so her children could play on it has posted a video of her altercation with police on social media.
In the video, the woman is approached by two police officers who ask her to move on from the playground as it's closed for Auckland's COVID-19 alert level 3.
The woman denies she is doing anything wrong.
"Um hello Mr Law Enforcement Officer I do not believe I am breaking the law and if you think I am I would require to see that," she tells the male officer.
The police officer replies "the playground's closed".
"Okay, I can see you're an intimidator," the woman says, before asking the officer's name. She then cuts off the second female officer who attempts to tell her the first officer's name in favour of asking "what's your law please"?
The female officer tries to tell her the law, saying "Under the Health Act 2020 this playground is cl-" but the woman interrupts again.
"Hello Mrs Law Enforcement officer I do not believe I am breaking any law and if you think I am I would require to see that."
Auckland's COVID-19 alert level 3 means all playgrounds are off-limits to help curb the spread of any infection. Under the COVID-19 Public Health Response Bill, officers are able to enter without a warrant any land, building, or place - if they have reason to believe a person is failing to comply with a health order - such as staying off a playground.
The officers tell the woman they'd received reports of her cutting the tape off the playground, and inform her if they hear of any further reports they will follow up with further enforcement action before turning to walk away.
The woman says she feels "intimidated" by the officers as she continues to follow after them, still filming.
"You haven't given me your name and you haven't proven I've broken any laws - do your job properly!
"Choose your side buddy - freedom or communism!
"I don't appreciate being intimidated by you either and you haven't given me your name - you work for me and you're required to give me your name"!
Insp Simon Walker, the acting area commander for Waitematā East, told Newshub the video shows only part of the interaction.
"The officers had tried to explain to the woman that no public playgrounds are allowed to be used under alert level 3," Walker said. "The woman would not comply with repeated requests not to allow her children to use the playground, and, given the presence of children, the officers decided that they did not want to cause any further upset to them."
He said they have identified the woman and are making further inquiries to locate her.
Walker said there are "learnings" for the officers involved, such as ensuring they are wearing personal protective equipment while dealing with the public.
"However they were in a difficult position weighing up what was the most appropriate course of action given the circumstances."