Lower Hutt: Liquor outlets targeted by Police

Half the on-licensed Lower Hutt premises visited in a recent police operation were caught selling alcohol to minors.

Ten premises were visited in Operation Vespa, with five caught breaking the law by selling to under-age patrons.

Sergeant Andrew Smith of Lower Hutt police said the results of the operation were disappointing.

“Only 50 per cent of those tested demonstrated they are conscientious about their obligations under the (Sale of Liquor) Act and serious about protecting our young people from liquor abuse.”

He said some of the breaches carried fines of up to $10,000.

The operation was part of an overall campaign to reduce the incidents of alcohol-related harm in the Hutt Valley, and Mr Smith said there would be more operations in the near future. Earlier operations had resulted in convictions at Eastbourne and NaeNae. Earlier operations show the local police take this facet of liquor licencing seriously.

3 thoughts on “Lower Hutt: Liquor outlets targeted by Police

    1. The real problem is the Police just dont want any pubs in lower hutt. That is the reality. It is wrong when Andy Smith turns upto pubs with 12 officers to do a walk through? yet over the hill in Carteton and masterton children are abused. Recently we held an accord meeting and what came out of that meeting is that all publicans felt that Smith is head strong and not out to help at all. Infact he alone is conterproductive to business in the Valley. Wellington Team Policing unit called Smith ” Just Juice Bragade”. Ray Wallace needs to look to get rid of this Cop as he gives all the good police a bad name. Move on Andy your not wanted by any of us. Maybe Traffic Duties would be better for you

      1. We know what you mean – he appears to be on a one man mission to alienate the Police from the Community…..

        8-10 Officers arrive, most are liaising, interacting and doing their job in a responsible and sensible fashion while Smith is posturing, arrogant, ignorant and rude AND after leaving (with no evidence and empty handed) we feel as though we have been violated and that we are the bad guys.

        We teach our (500 or so) kids that the Police are the good guys but this example of bad manners and ignorance does nothing to serve the motto emblazoned on their vehicles – Safer Communities Together. Nothing he did stood for “Community”, nothing he did stood for “Together” and the group of people (non-drinkers, by the way and all professionals) were left stunned and angry – the teachers amongst us were moved to comment “How could you hold your hand on your heart and tell your kids that THAT is a good example to look up to,” and if we can’t do that then the community is definitely NOT SAFER!

        All present that evening (and many were International visitors) were left with a very bad taste in their mouth at the very worst example of our Police force. Smith has single handedly undermined the good work that our local community Police do – they are magnificent by comparison. Many of us volunteer locally with Police / Community initiatives – we are seriously considering voting with our feet. Several of the clubs we are involved with have created the environment for the Police to interact with our children – again, we are seriously considering voting with our feet.

        Mr. Smith, no one begrudges you doing your job but we are not criminals and it costs nothing to smile and nothing to introduce yourself. We work hard to achieve the same ends you do and make our environment safe so why do you treat us like criminals?

        We had a visit from several schools recently and each kid said hello to every adult they met. Perhaps you need to go back to school! Get in touch or get out – this community doesn’t need the angst you are creating – we have enough of it from the so-called bad guys so to get it from you disengages us from the very ethos that your superiors promote and leaves the whole community exposed!

        It is a full 7 days since Smiths visit and people continue to speak to me about how angry they are at what he did and how he did it. I also feel embarrassed for the other Officers who had to stand by and watch it.

        I fully expect that the ranks will close BUT so too, don’t be surprised if the wider community becomes less inclined to help when asked.

        He needs to be censured in the strongest possible fashion.

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