Sunday, 24 October 2021 - 10:30am |

Police investigating after incidents at New Plymouth "car event"

2 min read

Please attribute to Inspector Darin Haenga, Acting Taranaki Area Commander: 
Police are extremely frustrated and concerned at the callous behaviour exhibited by people attending a “car event” in New Plymouth last night.
Police became aware of the event after it was communicated on social media during the week. 
Officers spoke to organisers regarding concerns such an event could breach Alert Level 2 restrictions and advised against holding the event. 
Disappointingly, organisers went ahead with the event and it was attended by hundreds of people. 
Shortly before 10pm, around a hundred cars were in the Connett Road/De Havilland Drive area, with some of them performing skids and burnouts.
At 10.30pm, a car doing burnouts lost control and collided with a parked vehicle, also striking a woman standing beside the parked car and crushing her between the two cars.
The woman was transported to Taranaki Base Hospital, where she remains in a stable condition.
An 18-year-old Inglewood man has been charged with sustained loss of traction in relation to this incident and will be appearing in New Plymouth District Court on 6 November.  
Police are not ruling out further charges and would like to hear from anyone who may have video footage of the crash and the events leading up to it. 
At 11pm, Police responded to a crash on Centennial Drive, after a vehicle not involved in the “car event” skidded on diesel that participants had poured on the road, and collided with a parked car.
Fortunately the driver of this car was not injured in the crash.
However, the patrol car of a police officer responding to the crash was surrounded by a group who had moved to Centennial Drive from Connett Road.
A male jumped on the bonnet of the patrol car and smashed the windscreen, while others threw bottles and cans at the patrol car, smashing the rear window and also causing damage to the body of the car. 
The officer was very lucky to not be seriously injured in this incident.
Police are aware there will have been participants in this “car event” who are as horrified as we are at the appalling behaviour displayed by those involved in these incidents and other unsafe driving behaviour during the night.
We would ask them to do the right thing and get in touch with us to provide any information, including video footage, which may help us identify those responsible. 
We would also like to hear from any members of the public who were not involved but may have witnessed something which may assist our enquiries.
Reports can be made online via 105: 
Issued by Police Media Centre.