Bystanders find AOS action 'cool'

Bystanders were surprised to see armed police arrest a driver on a busy Richmond road yesterday.

The man was arrested outside a Gladstone Rd business.

Tasman Outdoor Power Equipment manager technician Richard Ransfield said he was standing in the firm's yard, chatting with his daughter, and saw the arrest take place right in front of him.

Mr Ransfield said it was the first time he had seen a dramatic arrest first-hand.

He said a man in a black Subaru Forester drove into the yard, followed by a police car. The car had not even stopped when two Armed Offenders Squad members had the man out of the car and "dealt with him".

The arrest happened quickly, Mr Ransfield said. He did not feel unsafe, although his grandson was in the car with his daughter. He got her to close and lock the car doors.

He said the arrest was pretty cool to witness.

He went and closed the back gate to the business to stop customers coming in.

"I hope I haven't lost any customers because of it. I hope I didn't lose the sale of a mower."

The Subaru was later towed away.

Across the road, Mobil forecourt attendant Tony Page said he heard a police car driving south through the Queen St traffic lights with its siren going.

He then saw it do a u-turn in front of the Subaru, which was travelling north. It boxed the car into the driveway of Tasman Outdoor Power Equipment, and he saw a man on the ground and handcuffed.

Matthew Thompson, chef at Robbie's Richmond, said he heard the sirens about 9am and went outside for a look.

"Pretty much all I saw was a guy sitting on the ground with his hands behind his back and a guy in black standing over him. It was pretty cool."

Police spokeswoman Barbara Dunn said a man was in custody.

The arrest was made in connection with a search at a Stoke property.

The Nelson Mail