A female Korean tourist was allegedly racially abused and stolen from by members of a stag party in Queenstown.
The woman, on a tour of New Zealand, had been sitting on a lakefront bench on Rees Street at about 8.30pm on Saturday.
Senior constable Chris Blackford says a 19-year-old man from Mataura allegedly took her bag and emptied the contents, stealing cash and tipping the rest in a rubbish bin. About $500 plus $US100 was stolen.
The teenager was apprehended by police a short time later and arrested. He has been charged with theft and using threatening behaviour.
Two brothers from Gore, also part of the stag group, were also arrested. A 30-year-old was charged with disorderly behaviour likely to cause violence and threatening behaviour – after allegedly being racially abusive. His 35-year-old brother was arrested for obstruction and later given a pre-charge warning.
The trio are to appear in Queens-town District Court on April 22.
Scot on drugs charge
A 20-year-old Scotsman living in Queenstown has been charged with importing drugs into the country.
Blackford says: “NZ Customs department intercepted a package sent from the UK on April 9.
“It contained a class C controlled drug matter, cannabis seeds. Inquiries made at the property it was addressed to resulted in the arrest of a 20-year-old Scotsman at midday yesterday [Monday].”
The man will appear in Queenstown District Court on a date yet to be set.
‘Walked soles off his feet’
A barefoot tramper was airlifted to hospital from Routeburn Track after “wearing the soles off his feet”.
The 63-year-old Queenstown man spent a week in hospital recovering from his injuries sustained during his tramp.
Friends had raised the alarm after the walker, who enjoys walking barefoot, failed to return from a planned three-day tramp as arranged.
“Inquiries were made and it was found he had been taken off the Routeburn for medical treatment after wearing the soles off his feet,” Blackford says. “He likes tramping in bare feet.”
The man was reported overdue at 7.30pm on Saturday. After setting off on Monday last week, he was helicoptered to hospital from Routeburn Falls Hut on Tuesday.
Rocks thrown at toddler
A four-year-old girl was pushed from a swing in a Queenstown playground and had rocks thrown at her by two older boys.
The child’s mother contacted police after the attack on Friday afternoon in Remarkables Crescent Park Playground.
“The two boys are described as Maori and between 10 and 15 years old,” Blackford says. “One had a dyed streak in his hair. Inquiries are continuing.”
A 47-year-old Arrowtown man was taken home by police after youngsters found him unconscious on Adamson Drive shortly after midnight yesterday.
“They called an ambulance because they were concerned about his health,” Blackford says.
Officers arrived and found the man was just blind drunk – so intoxicated he couldn’t tell them who or where he was.
“They found some ID and took him to his home address. The household members were described as being unimpressed.”
A 21-year-old Queenstown man spent Saturday morning detoxing in police cells after being found grossly intoxicated on Fernhill Road. The youngster had earlier wandered into a property. Officers decided he needed to be arrested for his own safety and he was later released without charge.
Thieves steal big furniture
Police want to hear from anyone who spotted brazen thieves stealing a large ‘tallboy’ dresser from a Frankton Rd property.
The wooden furniture, filled with clothes, was taken from 4/1080 Frankton Rd sometime between April 9 and Monday evening.
The owner had moved the dresser into the lounge of the property while moving house in stages. When they brought the rest of their possessions across, it was already gone.
Blackford says: “Police want to hear from anybody who saw the ‘tallboy’ being removed.”
Two jackets were stolen from Winnies Pizza Bar on The Mall at 2.30am Sunday. They were found in a bin on Searle Lane but an Eftpos card was missing from one of the pockets.
Freegan goes free
A Dutchman who took fruit from a bin behind a Queenstown shop was released without charge after describing himself as a ‘freegan’.
Police were called to Gorge Rd at 5.30pm on Tuesday after a complaint by the owner of FreshChoice about someone rifling through the store’s bins.
Officers stopped the 24-year-old Dutchman on Robins Rd and questioned him about the fruit.
The man claimed he had taken it from the bins behind the Mediterranean Market and was released without charge.
Freeganism is the practice of reclaiming and eating food that has been discarded.
Officers did however arrest a 19-year-old man who was messing about with a shopping trolley in the early hours of the next morning.
“The teenager was with a group clowning around with the trolley outside the council building,” Blackford says.
“He was asked four times to return it but argued the point and became obstructive. He was arrested and at that point had an epiphany, realised he wasn’t going to win. So he was given a pre-charge warning.”