It's tempting to categorise the 70-minute abscondence by a man under mandatory quarantine as the act of a selfish, and conceited, villain.
Putting 5 million lives and an economy at risk, purely to stock up on some superfluous personal hygiene products would readily qualify for such a sobriquet. Yesterday, he only heaped further odium on himself by telling the Herald he had "no evidence" he was infected with Covid-19 and he felt fine.
But, as is often case with villains, it pays to look at the backstory and consider what led to the terrible act.
To do this, you need look at the processes leading up to allowing this man to slip through a fence and disappear into the crowd.
This was no masterclass of espionage. It was plainly a case of an opportunist taking a chance and sneaking through a gap in the managed isolation devised to protect the country.
The reason this was allowed to happen is because all the checks and balances have been set up on ad-hoc basis as each new problem has been exposed.
It's nothing short of remarkable that we've made it this far with a clean slate of community transmission, but there have always been cracks in the system. All this individual did was exploit another of them.
We currently find ourselves in the uncomfortable limbo of not knowing the full consequence of this mishap because the contact tracing systems we have attempted to put in place are woefully inadequate. This is not because of their functionality but rather because they rely on us to make the right decisions.
The Herald reported this week less than 0.2 per cent of the population had been using the Government's Covid Tracer app.
If everyone who entered that Countdown outlet at that time had scanned the poster with their phones, then they could be swiftly tracked down, self-isolated and monitored.
There's an element of trust that underpins the current system: the idea that most people will do the right thing for the nation. This might be true, but it doesn't account for the bit of selfishness we all have in us.
Sometimes someone might just want to duck out to the supermarket; drive out of town to go ride their bike; hop on a surfboard in the middle of lockdown; or avoid the inconvenience of scanning a poster taped to a store window.
It's also worth remembering there was an element of wider selfishness which got us into this quarantine mess in the first place. The glut of quarantined arrivals we have now can be partly attributed to New Zealanders abroad who ignored warnings, continued their international stays and only returned when circumstances became desperate or they had completed their offshore business.
The problem is that each of these small, individual acts of selfishness can conspire together to further undermine the flaws in an imperfect system.
The solution to improving a system so vulnerable to tiny transgressions will never be found in whipping out pitchforks and hurling rocks at a pantomime villain.
Ultimately, there's a little of that villain in everyone who continues to slip past contact-tracing points without pointing the phone and pressing the "scan" button.