Football ref allegedly assaulted by off-duty police officer

File photo / Thinkstock
File photo / Thinkstock

An assistant football referee has laid a complaint to police that an off-duty police officer assaulted him after a premier league match in Christchurch last weekend.

Police have today appealed for any witnesses of the alleged assault to come forward.

They have confirmed that they have received a complaint from the assistant referee who was officiating at a game between Western and Cashmere Technical at ASB Football Park, formerly known as English Park, on Saturday, June 29.

It is alleged that an incident between the assistant referee and the police officer, a spectator, took place after the game as the match officials were leaving the field to enter their changing facilities.

District Commander Superintendent Gary Knowles confirmed today that a serving police officer is involved in the alleged incident.

He says the incident was "not related to the officer's role as a police employee''.

An internal investigation will also be undertaken, and police say they won't comment further on the officer's involvement "at this stage''.

Police have interviewed the victim and made preliminary enquiries with Mainland Football.

Senior Sergeant Paul Merrett says police hope to speak to other witnesses in the coming days.

"We are appealing for anybody who has seen what occurred to contact us as soon as possible so that they can be interviewed,'' he says.

Any witnesses or people with information about the incident are asked to contact Mr Merrett on 03 3741760.

- APNZ

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