A video showing a young boy caught in the crossfire of police pepper spray has surfaced on Facebook.

It shows a group of people in a confrontation with police, with officers then deciding to take action and move in on the group in Mangere, South Auckland.

The video shows a woman being thrown to the ground and a young boy crying after pepper spray is used to diffuse the group.

There has been mixed reaction to the video on social media, with some people shocked at the young boy's suffering, while others have said the police were not in the wrong.


Kids should not be around that but that is no excuse for police officers to pepper spray little kids, commented Silia Kamila Tafea.

"If they were responsible law abiding people to start with they wouldn't of put the kids in that situation, at the end of the day adults should know better," said Brenden Dunn.

Counties Manukau Inspector Wati Chaplow said police were called to an address in Lavinia Crescent at around 10:15am to assist ambulance with what appeared to be a stabbing.

He said a number of people from within the neighbourhood became aggressive towards police.

The boy can be seen rubbing his eyes after the incident. Photo / Supplied via Facebook
The boy can be seen rubbing his eyes after the incident. Photo / Supplied via Facebook

Mr Chaplow said he was disappointed with the "appalling behaviour" which included spitting and screaming abuse at police in front of young children while they were trying to help.

"Our job is to keep our community safe and we do not expect to be set on by members of the community for trying to do our job."

He said a 22-year-old female, a 22-year-old male and a 34-year-old female, all have been charged with assaulting police, resisting police and obstructing police.

In a police statement Pacific Community Leader, Poutoa Papali'i, said communities needed to take ownership of their behaviour and set good examples for our young ones.

"This type of behaviour falls back on us, the community, and it is just unacceptable that our Police should be treated like this in their line of duty."

Counties Manukau district media communications manager Shelley Nahr said none of the officers had been stood down as a result of the incident and it was not being investigated "at this stage".

She said police couldn't comment on whether the child had received any medical treatment.