Woman punched in fight says more security needed

Monique Poirier was punched in the shoulder after calling police about a fight taking place outside an Auckland Countdown on Tuesday evening. Photo/ Facebook
Monique Poirier was punched in the shoulder after calling police about a fight taking place outside an Auckland Countdown on Tuesday evening. Photo/ Facebook

A woman punched in the shoulder after intervening in a fight outside a Pt Chevalier supermarket is calling for better security in the area.

Monique Poirier, who is running for the Albert-Eden-Roskill local board, was walking past the local Countdown with former mayor Christine Fletcher when they saw a fight taking place about 6pm today."I said 'I don't feel comfortable just walking away'. I called the police and one guy didn't like that so he shoved me and punched me a couple of times."

Poirier said she was not badly hurt but the incident had made her feel both angry and sad.

Staff told her and Fletcher aggression and drunkenness were common outside the store and they often felt intimidated by the group.

"Honestly I'm quite an empathetic person, and apart from the fact that it hurt, it just made me feel quite sad," Poirier said.

"There were five guys who were there and quite drunk and I think homeless."

Vulnerable people needed help but the issue of aggressive drunk behaviour outside this particular supermarket was intimidating staff and something needed to be done, she said.

"That place needs full-time security, the staff are very vulnerable.

"A lot of the guys go in drunk and try to buy alcohol and staff have an obligation not to sell to them so when they refuse to I know it can get quite scary for them."

Staff said they called the police on a regular basis because of the behaviour of the group.

Poirier said police had told her they would drive by the site more regularly.

She said that was not enough.

"Especially when there's a lot of families and elderly people around."

A police spokeswoman said Pt Chev was in a busy district and officers were regularly patrolling hot spots.

In this instance, police had been called and two arrests were made - one for male assaults female and breach of bail and a second person for breach of bail.

"When we were called we came," she said.

A Countdown spokeswoman said the company did not own the mall at Pt Chev.

"We have a lease agreement with our landlord. The mall is under unit title which has several different owners.

"Our team and their security is very important to us, the store manager is working with mall management to talk through options regarding the problems in the arcade.

"In regards to making the area safer including security and cameras, we recommend talking to the police, council, mall management or the individual landowners."

- NZ Herald

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