Open letter to TVNZ Head John Gillespie

Published: Tue 23 Aug 2016 04:23 PM
Open letter to TVNZ Head, John Gillespie, from Auckland Council Candidate David Rankin
Dear John
You made the following public comment today regarding the actions of TVNZ reporters and a cameraman at my campaign launch yesterday which was interrupted by a deranged man wielding a sword and threatening us, and dragging his young son with him:
"Our team never felt in danger and nor were they concerned about the safety of anyone else. They saw no necessity at the time to call Police." John Gillespie, TVNZ, 23/8/2016
However, Waitakere Police area commander Inspector Scott Webb has since confirmed that the Police received a call at that time about a man who was yelling and waving a sword on Awaroa Rd. The Herald reported that:
The 42-year-old man had driven off by the time police arrived, however a police unit later sighted the car on Great North Road in Kelston. The man failed to stop for police so a low-speed pursuit ensued.
Police managed to get alongside the man, who still had the child with him, and officers pleaded with him to stop.
The man turned into Victor Street, in Avondale, and police managed to block the vehicle in.
The man was detained for treatment under the care of health authorities. The child was unharmed. Police have been in contact with Government agencies to ensure the ongoing care and welfare of the child. NZ Herald 23/8/2016
Fortunately for that young child and for the safety of the public generally, one of my invited guests called the Police.
Given the Police version of events, which matches with that of mine and Dr Don Brash, who was also present, I have one question for you.
Do you stand by the statement you made today that: "Our team never felt in danger and nor were they concerned about the safety of anyone else. They saw no necessity at the time to call Police." ?
As you made this a public matter by issuing a statement on behalf of TVNZ, I would appreciate a response in public.
David Rankin

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