11 May 2017

Woman called police twice before being stabbed

1:00 pm on 11 May 2017

The police failed to act quickly enough to help a woman who was stabbed by her mentally ill son, despite her repeatedly calling 111, the Independent Police Conduct Authority says.

Standard cells have a telephone for inmates to call pre-approved phone numbers.

The woman in Omapere called 111 three times before police responded. Photo: RNZ / Kim Baker Wilson

The woman survived the attack in Omapere, Northland, in 2015, and the authority has just released its report.

The authority said the woman initially called the police about her son at around 6am, but they told her to hang on until a pre-arranged Crisis Team appointment later that morning.

The woman called 111 again when the team would not take her son away, telling police she feared for her safety.

There were two officers in Omapere at the time, but they did not go to see the woman until after a third 111 call reporting her son had stabbed her.

The authority said the police underestimated the woman's concerns and should have responded after the first call.

Police said they accepted the findings and had undertaken more training for staff to deal with people with mental health issues.

Get the new RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs