Key Points:

A police recruit found guilty of assault has been allowed to graduate without being charged or fined.

The man was drinking with other off-duty recruits at a Wellington bar when he abused a female colleague, made derogatory comments about her appearance and pushed her, The Dominion Post reported today.

He later grabbed a male constable, forcing him against a wall and goading him to "go for a fight".

When another constable intervened, he slapped him on the cheek and struck him on the jaw.

The recruit refused to be interviewed by police but later provided a written statement denying the incident.

An internal investigation, completed after he graduated from police college, found him guilty of common assault but he was not charged.

Police did not lay charges because the assaults were minor and the victims did not wish to pursue the matter, a police spokesman told the newspaper.

The disciplinary process was managed by the superintendent of the police college and reviewed by the Independent Police Conduct Authority.

The man, now working as an officer in South Auckland, would receive counselling from a commissioned officer for one year but there would be no record on his personal file.

The man was not the first recruit to be investigated for disgraceful conduct.

Another former recruit is awaiting trial for raping a woman he met on the internet two weeks into his police training.

Three other recruits were investigated in 2006 including one accused of domestic-related burglary and another man convicted of assaulting another recruit with a bottle in the police bar.

Police Association vice-president Chris Cahill said the push for new recruits had not compromised standards.

"There will always be someone who doesn't measure up in any organisation, but in general, we're happy with the standard of recruits that come out," he said.

- NZPA