Drunken revellers frustrate cops


Frustrated Queenstown police are disappointed after a “hectic” weekend of disorder.

More than a dozen arrests were made between Friday night and late yesterday, police say.

Many of the revellers were celebrating the start of the Queenstown Winter Festival.

But festival organisers are quick to point out none of the arrests was believed to have occurred inside organised festival events.

Senior sergeant Keith Newell says Saturday night, in particular, was “hectic”.

“[It] was extremely busy – on a par with a New Year’s Eve here and we are very disappointed at the number of people who were intoxicated, causing disorder, assaults, fights and drink driving.

“We find it very frustrating.”

Police dealt with seven incidents involving disorderly behaviour and assaults in the resort, and an indecent assault.

An 18-year-old woman from Invercargill was grabbed on the buttocks by an unknown male while walking in Hallenstein St about 12.30am on Saturday, Newell says.

The assailant ran from the scene. He was described as being of Indian appearance and about 170cm tall.

Seven drink driving arrests were made.

They included an 18-year-old woman who had been at the police station to see her boyfriend who was in the cells.

She stopped at a checkpoint at 3.20am on Saturday, with an alleged, breath alcohol level of 250mcg, and returned to the station.

Queenstown Winter Festival director Lisa Buckingham says she’s disappointed to hear of the poor behaviour of a minority.

Organisers encouraged responsible behaviour, supplying free water and restricting alcohol sales. An estimated 10,000 people attended Friday’s opening night.

Otago Daily Times