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1/21/2005
New Zealand Cop Ignores Drowned Man in Favor of Speed Camera
A New Zealand police officer refused to attend the scene of a drowning, choosing instead to continue issuing speed camera tickets.

Several individuals called the police to report finding a drowning victim in Hawke's Bay, New Zealand. The police said no police were available -- even though a police officer was very close by using a speed camera. Even after a 40 minute wait, no officer showed up. Unfortunately, this is not just an isolated incident. New Zealand has tripled the number of speeding tickets issued since 1999. A record one thousand motorists receive a ticket from a live officer every day (speed cameras add to the ticket total). Yet burglary victims wait on average over 22 hours to see a police officer.

Article Excerpt:
"We waited 40 minutes for the police to come and do their part. Nobody was available to come to the scene of an unexplained death, or to get an account of what had taken place," Mr Parr said.

He thought police must have been busy dealing with essential matters elsewhere, but then saw a police officer with a speedgun about 3km from the scene of the drowning - at the Ocean Beach Rd intersection with Waimarama Rd.



Burglary victims in Canterbury face an average 22-hour wait " and in some cases up to three days " before being seen by an officer.

Nationwide, police are failing to meet their 10-minute target for priority one incidents 31 per cent of the time.

ACT MP Muriel Newman said the speed ticket figures proved precious police resources were being poured into money-making activities.
Source: Body stayed on beach while cop manned speed camera (New Zealand Press Association, 1/22/2005)

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