Fifteen year-old Timoti Mohi died in the stolen car he was driving shortly after 1am today. If he had chosen to stop when Police signalled for him to do so, he would likely still be alive, albeit facing charges relating to the theft of a vehicle.
His friend and accomplice, another teenager, is in Auckland Hospital suffering leg injuries after being extracted from the stolen Nissan Sylvia that Timoti embedded in a power pole after fleeing from Police along the southern motorway at speeds of up to 180km.
On seeing the dangerous ways Timoti - along with some other accomplices in another stolen car - were travelling, the Police officer following them pulled over to the side of the road. Shortly afterwards, Timoti died near the Market Rd off-ramp.
Timoti and his accomplice had with them some simple equipment - rubber gloves and a pair of pliers - which are commonly used by thieves.
They were observed acting suspiciously near motor vehicles in Sussex St, Grey Lynn, by Police. When a nearby Police Dog Unit was dispatched, two vehicles - both stolen - fled the area. Timoti was driving one of them. The other driver and his friends are, at this stage, at large.
"This tragedy was completely avoidable," Acting District Commander Chief Inspector John Palmer said.
"Anyone who is requested by Police to stop their vehicle should do so and face the consequences of their behaviour. Making the decision to flee at speed has had fatal consequences for too many people and their grieving families."
The Independent Police Conduct Authority has been notified of the incident. The Auckland City District's Serious Crash Unit and the Professional Standards Unit are also investigating.
Issued by Noreen Hegarty
Auckland City Police Communications Manager
Ph 09 302 6947 or 0274-951-589