Video of officer appearing to punch alleged offender multiple times referred to Independent Police Conduct Authority

Police have referred an incident to the Independent Police Conduct Authority after a video of an arrest appeared to show an officer punching an alleged offender in the head multiple times.

On Monday at around 4:18pm, police said they became aware of a stolen vehicle travelling through Manukau, Auckland. The police Eagle helicopter spotted the car and kept an eye on it while a unit on the ground signalled for the vehicle to stop. The driver failed to stop and continued travelling.

No pursuit was initiated, police said, and the Eagle continued to maintain observations as the vehicle headed towards Flat Bush.

The car was successfully spiked on Murphys Road, Flat Bush, although it kept travelling around the area at a low speed until police units brought it to a stop.

Three youths were subsequently taken into custody and have been referred to Youth Aid. There were no reports of injuries.

Footage of the arrest shows about six police cars surrounding a white car the suspects were in. Officers then drag about five suspects out of the vehicle and onto the road.

Another video of the arrest posted on social media appears to show an officer dragging one of the suspects out of the car and onto the road before punching them in the back and head area. The officer then holds the suspect down by the head before a fellow officer comes to their assistance. 

"Police acknowledge the videos circulating on social media and we are now reviewing the actions of our people," said Superintendent Jill Rogers, Counties Manukau District Commander.

"The incident will also be referred to the Independent Police Conduct Authority (IPCA). Given this, we are limited in further comment at this time."