Man pulls gun at Leo Molloy's Headquarters prompting renewed calls for downtown Auckland police station

There are renewed calls for a dedicated police station in downtown Auckland after a firearms incident at the Viaduct this week. 

Former mayoral candidate Leo Molloy confronted a man with a gun at his bar, Headquarters, two nights ago.  

Molloy told Newshub on Saturday he believed the incident was gang-related and was a sign of a rise in anti-social behaviour in the CBD. 

"I actually spoke to him, and I said to him, 'mate, there's that many f**king cameras in here, the police are going to be here within two minutes'," Molloy recalled to Newshub.  

He told the man: "'My advice to you would be to put that f**king thing away and get out of here as fast as you can', and he just calmly put it down his pants and walked out the front." 

The former Auckland mayoral contender believed it was gang-related. 

"Based on comments of the person with the gun was making towards the person who was - let's describe him as the victim - there was some sort of territorial matter being discussed." 

A 23-year-old man was located near Headquarters bar and was taken into custody. He was charged with assault and various firearms offences and will appear at the Auckland District Court on Wednesday. 

"Thankfully, no injuries were reported in relation to this incident, and police have provided support to those involved," a police spokesperson said.  

But it highlighted compounding concerns about what has been described as rising anti-social behaviour in central Auckland - behaviour that risks turning tourists away. 

A tourist from Denmark told Newshub: "We have very strict gun laws so it's very rare that you meet people with guns so that always puts us off when we're out travelling." 

Police used to have a downtown station not far away from Headquarters on Fort St, but it was closed in 2013. 

"If I'd become Mayor, I absolutely would definitely have given them a downtown facility," Molloy said. "When they had Fort St, you used to see police all the time. Now, you hardly ever see them." 

His former mayoral competitor Viv Beck, chief executive of the local business association Heart of the City, agreed. 

"We've been lobbying for a downtown police station, and we continue to because while the police have stepped up in recent months - and that's fantastic - we do want to see more of them," she told Newshub. 

The firearms incident didn't frighten Molloy. 

"I'm legendary for standing up to them. No, I wasn't f**king scared at all."

But gun crime is hardly a draw card for people considering a night out on the town. 

Police Minister Mark Mitchell told Newshub that while the deployment of resources was an operational matter for police, he has made his "expectations very clear" around increased presence of officers in Auckland CBD.

"Over six years, the crime situation has been allowed to fester, including a significant growth in gang membership, that we are now working very hard alongside the police to get on top of," Mitchell said.

"The coalition Government is committed to cracking down on serious offending and gangs. To achieve this, we're backing police with more powers, tools and resources so they can get the job done."