Matthew Theunissen

Matthew Theunissen is a reporter for the Herald on Sunday.

Officer attacked in Otara released from hospital

Sergeant Simon Tate
Sergeant Simon Tate

A police officer who was attacked during a traffic stop in south Auckland on Saturday night has been released from hospital.

Sergeant Simon Tate was punched, kicked and had his head stomped after stopping a vehicle in Otara.

Mr Tate was released from Middlemore Hospital today and would continue his recovery at home, police said in a statement.

He had surgery this week and may still require further operations on his facial fractures.

"Police are very pleased with the speed at which he has recovered from his brutal injuries sustained in the weekend and news of his discharge from hospital was met with relief by friends and colleagues," the statement said.

Mr Tate had received messages of support and visits from a wide range of people including the sheriff's department in Waushara County, Wisconsin, local politicians and the Police Commissioner Peter Marshall.

Mr Tate and his partner, Constable Lisa Ross, wished to thank the public, the police and hospital staff for their support.

"We've been well supported by everyone this week and we're really thankful that Simon is recovering well," Ms Ross said.

Mr Tate was attacked from behind while performing a routine vehicle stop. Continuous blows rendered him unconscious on the ground, at which point his attacker continued the assault.

Walter George Tauatevalu, 36, has been charged with attempted murder and two charges of male assaults female in connection with the incident.

- APNZ

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