The day the cops arrived at my house
Read the incident statements onlineEVAN HARDING
Southland farmer Corey Vreugdenhil describes his account of what happened with police arrived at his property.
4.40pm, March 18, 2012: Three armed police constables arrive at the rural Greenhills property of Corey Vreugdenhil to question him about a complaint that he had threatened neighbour Les Cooper.
"They came to the front door and knocked and said they wanted to speak to me. I said f... off. Then they barged into the house and said they had come to arrest me and I told them again to f... off," the 1.9 metres and 135 kilos Mr Vreugdenhil said.
He was sitting at his computer desk and the police "dragged me off the chair and pepper-sprayed me".
"I was fighting back, then I stood up and they all fell off."
The officers then threatened to Taser him, he said.
To read the police tactical report click here
To read Corey Vregudenhil's wife's statement click here
To read a transcript of the initial 111 complaint click here
To read the police's letter of compensation click here
"I stood there and said, 'what do you want me to do?'. I put my hands behind my back and knelt on the floor and they handcuffed me very tightly. They cut into my wrists."
The pepper spray in his eyes was stinging, he said.
Officers told him they were going to arrest him for an incident with his neighbour, but he told police he had no idea what they were talking about.
Officers then pulled him to his feet. He asked them to loosen the handcuffs so they took them off and put them on at the front of him, he said.
"I asked them to clean my eyes so I could see what was happening and they refused. They said they would get me down the steps.
"I wanted my eyes cleaned first and they refused to clean my eyes. They took me to the steps and I said, 'I am not going down the steps until you clean my eyes', and I stopped, and they didn't. There were two police officers lying on the bottom of the steps."
Two of the officers then jumped on top of him, he said.
"They jumped on top of me and the third officer started punching me in the face."
Police statements say he was punched in the face because he was trying to grab a Glock pistol from the holster of one of the officers, but he denies this.
"I still had handcuffs on then one of the officers pulled out his Taser and Tasered me. I pulled the probe out and threw it back at him.
"Then the officer reloaded his Taser and threatened to Taser me a second time and then one of the officers went to his car and got something to clean my eyes out with."
"I was still sitting at the top of the steps. They proceeded to clean my eyes and Sergeant Wing Ng turned up. My wife was already here. My daughters arrived.
"I was still in handcuffs, bleeding from the nose and mouth from when the officer punched me.
"My daughters were told if they didn't behave, they would be arrested too.
"They took me down the stairs to the police car and then they took me back up the stairs. Then the paddy wagon arrived and they put me in the van and 20 minutes later they took me to the station."
"I refused to get out until a doctor arrived to deal with my injuries. They got a doctor . . . they weren't coming into the paddy wagon to get me out.
"The doctor checked me out and they took photos. Injuries were cuts on the wrist, bleeding nose and mouth and a puncture hole from the Taser.
"They [Taser] bruise good.
"They put me in the cells for the night and took me to court the next morning."
- The Southland Times
Subscribe to a digital replica of The Southland Times.
Southland Times subscriber news and information.
Click here for information about advertising with The Southland Times.