Col­lege boy crash vic­tim buried

Central Leader - - Front Page -

Avon­dale Col­lege stu­dents said farewell to one of their peers yes­ter­day, killed in a po­lice pur­suit that lasted mere sec­onds.

Robert Alaiula, 14, was a passenger in a ve­hi­cle that lost con­trol and hit a lamp­post and tree at 3.20am last Fri­day af­ter po­lice tried to stop the car.

His fu­neral was held yes­ter­day at St Mary’s Catholic Church in Avon­dale.

The in­ci­dent hap­pened when po­lice were pa­trolling in Ti­ti­rangi af­ter re­ports of a bur­glary in Laingholm.

The po­lice car ar­rived at the Ti­ti­rangi shops and saw three ve­hi­cles in a group, which drove off in dif­fer­ent di­rec­tions.

The pa­trol de­cided to stop one of the cars, a grey Subaru For­rester sta­tion­wagon with four peo­ple in­side.

The pur­suit lasted 47 sec­onds be­fore the Subaru, which had been re­ported stolen, lost con­trol and crashed at the in­ter­sec­tion of Golf and Ti­ti­rangi roads, hit­ting a lamp­post and tree.

Robert died at the scene and two other pas­sen­gers were crit­i­cally in­ured.

The 15-year-old driver es­caped with mi­nor in­juries and faces charges in­clud­ing reck­less driv­ing caus­ing death.

The se­ri­ous crash unit is in­ves­ti­gat­ing the in­ci­dent.

An in­ter­nal po­lice in­ves­ti­ga­tion is also un­der way and the In­de­pen­dent Po­lice Con­duct Au­thor­ity has been ad­vised.

Avon­dale Col­lege prin­ci­pal Brent Lewis was at­tend­ing the fu­neral and could not be con­tacted for com­ment.

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