By Mike Barrington
and Kristin Edge
Alcohol was the common factor in three separate incidents where Northland police officers were spat at while arresting festive season revellers.
Alcohol was believed to have contributed to a 17-year-old Moerewa youth facing several serious charges and had police yesterday urging adults to supervise young people drinking over the holiday period.
Senior Sergeant Peter Robinson of Kerikeri said police had been called to Moerewa about 8pm on Christmas Eve by the family of the youth, who was reported to be "out of control", assaulting people and damaging property. The youth allegedly spat blood and mucus into a police officer's face.
The youth was charged with assaulting a female, two counts of assaulting police, resisting arrest, disorderly behaviour, intimidation and threatening to kill.
Mr Robinson said the police officer involved had received minor injuries taking the youth into custody, but was able to continue with his duties.
"Alcohol is believed to have contributed to this offending," Mr Robinson said. "The safety message here is that young people need to be supervised when they are drinking. Over these holidays people need to make sure they [young people] are drinking sensibly."
In Whangarei, an officer was spat at in the face while putting an arrested man into the back of a patrol car.
Sergeant Stephanie Hudson said officers were called to Onerahi about 4.40pm on Boxing Day after a father and son dispute. It's alleged the son punched his father and then used a bottle to hit the father. The 18-year-old was charged with assault with a weapon, assaulting police, threatening to kill, and breach of bail.
On Christmas Day a man allegedly spat a mouthful of blood at an officer, narrowly missing him, while being placed in a patrol car. Police were called to Maunu Rd about 8.05pm following a fight between two men. One man faces charges of fighting, assaulting police, and resisting police.