Win­dow wash­ers beat brain-in­jured man

Central Leader - - WHAT’S ON - CA­TRIN OWEN

A man al­ready suf­fer­ing from a brain in­jury was at­tacked by win­dow wash­ers at a busy Auck­land in­ter­sec­tion.

Luke White was walk­ing to a bus stop on the af­ter­noon of April 30 when a win­dow washer ’’snatched’’ his ex­pen­sive sun­glasses from his face at the in­ter­sec­tion of Pen­rose Rd and Mt Welling­ton High­way.

‘‘I went and got them back off one of them and it all started from there,’’ White said.

He said he was beaten in the face with a cop­per pipe.

‘‘I had to go through some bushes and they all jumped on me then we fell onto the road.’’

He said there were seven at­tack­ers who fled the scene shortly be­fore he sought refuge at a nearby restau­rant while he waited for po­lice and an am­bu­lance to turn up.

He was taken to Auck­land City Hospi­tal with two large cuts to his brow and nose re­quir­ing stitches.

White’s mum, Chris White said win­dow wash­ers were a big prob­lem in the com­mu­nity and the knock to his face could have killed her son be­cause the 30-year-old had suf­fered a brain in­jury from a mo­tocross ac­ci­dent when he was younger.

‘‘A knock to the face could ac­tu­ally kill him, he had a bro­ken fe­mur and can’t run be­cause he’s got pins in his body,’’ she said.

She said her son was a peace­maker.

‘‘He would rather talk than fight, but you can’t talk those peo­ple around.’’

White said he also had his phone snatched from him by a win­dow washer in an ear­lier en­counter.

In­spec­tor Andy King said po­lice searched the area for the of­fend­ers but were un­able to lo­cate them.

‘‘A num­ber of en­quiries were made with mul­ti­ple shops in the area, about whether any­one had seen what oc­curred or had any CCTV footage avail­able,’’ King said.

King said of­fi­cers fol­lowed up with the vic­tim and car­ried out fur­ther en­quiries.

‘‘The vic­tim re­turned to the scene and pro­vided po­lice with a piece of cop­per pipe that he had found. This pipe will be as­sessed for foren­sic dence.’’

In April a bill was sub­mit­ted to Par­lia­ment by Na­tional MP Jami-Lee Ross pro- evi- pos­ing wind­screen wash­ing at in­ter­sec­tions be made il­le­gal, giv­ing po­lice the power to is­sue wash­ers with $150 in­stant fines.

The bill passed its first read­ing by 93 votes to 28 and would amend the Land Trans­port Act, mak­ing it an of­fence to wash ve­hi­cles in a man­ner that may be un­safe or cause nui­sance to a per­son.

Ep­som com­mu­nity con­sta­ble Chris Gwilliam said ear­lier in April wind­screen wash­ing was still an is­sue at the Green­lane in­ter­sec­tion, Mt Welling­ton in­ter­sec­tion and ar­eas such as Great South Road in Coun­ties Manukau.

Gwilliam said po­lice con­duct daily pa­trols in the prob­lem ar­eas but it was hard as they had no power.

Any­one with in­for­ma­tion about the in­ci­dent is asked to con­tact the Mt Welling­ton Po­lice on 09 302 6400.

CA­TRIN OWEN/FAIRFAX NZ

Luke White has been left with gashes and cracks on his face.

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