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Steve 'Snoopman' Edwards
Steve 'Snoopman' Edwardshttps://snoopman.net.nz/
Former editor at Māori Television, who forged his ‘Thunk Evil Without Being Evil’ super-power while writing a ground-breaking thesis on the Global Financial Crisis. Now a dissident journalist, he publishes on Snoopman News.

SkyGate: After Gunn’s Trial, Ex-Cop says “the Police literally jumped the gun”

Skygate opinion
PHOTO SUPPLIED.

Day 2 of Gunn & Clark Trial, Manukau District Court, New Zealand

The strange trial of a seasoned independent media duo continued to get stranger on May 10 2024, at the Manukau District Court in South Auckland, New Zealand, following their spectacular arrests 15 months prior.

The public gallery witnessed the Court’s theatre descend deeper into a cruel farce in the afternoon when the police prosecutor attempted to humiliate a defense witness with innuendo more befitting of an L.A. Law episode.

But, thanks to the mischief of a cyber god — as one wag quipped — the ploy of the Police’s prosecution lawyer, Jerome Beveridge, plonked like soggy soap.

Previously, on ‘Court Soap’, it was revealed the media duo were arrested in 18 seconds flat by Police, who were sent to eject them from the arrivals lounge inside the International Airport, in the early evening of Saturday February 25 2023.

The accused — a former TVNZ news anchor, Liz Gunn, and her camerman, Jonathan Clark, who once worked for CNN and the Wall Street Journal, had faced charges for trespass, and resisting arrest. Gunn also faced a charge for assault in the ‘judge-alone’ trial. However, Judge Janey Forrest dismissed the two charges for trespass on the first day. But, the resistance and assault charges remained.

Auckland Airport’s SkyGate Security Coordinator, Anna Kolodeznaya, said she received a radio call-out to confront the pair about their filming. Airport security assumed their professional camera meant their media enterprise was a commercial venture. Since they did not have accreditation to film, Kolodeznaya assumed they could be trespassed for failing to gain permission.

The Police failed to establish that the duo’s FreeNZ Media was a non-profit, donation-funded entity and therefore did not require either accreditation, nor permission. Gunn’s and Clark’s spectacular arrests within 18 seconds of the Police greeting them, meant this constabulary duo skipped the crucial step of due diligence to establish their viewpoint. Kolodeznaya’s accusation that she was assaulted appeared to be intended to gain a swift response. Yet, Kolodeznaya admitted Gunn touched her to get her attention.

Gunn returned to the witness box, for what she described as “deeply traumatizing” afterward, while Beveridge attempted to create wriggle room for the Police, by venturing that bystanders and supporters may have accidentally injured the reporter. She accused Senior Constable Erich Postlewaight of a brutal assault, that she said tore ligaments in her shoulder, arm and wrist. Clark stated he sustained bruising from Constable Robett Luong grabbing, spinning and tackling him.

The independent media crew were waiting to film the arrival of a Tokelauan family, who had come to live in New Zealand following a cruel house arrest for refusing to be ‘vaccinated’. One supporter who moved into help was Dr René De Monchy MD.

The psychiatrist, who practiced as a medical doctor for 28 years, said he rebuked Senior Constable Postlewaight, because he could see he was hurting Gunn with the hold he had her in. He spoke out as a citizen and a doctor, he told the Court.

Yet, Beveridge tried several times to get Dr De Monchy to admit he was fond of Gunn. However, the police prosecutor’s attempts fell comically flat amid groans and laughter from the public gallery.

Moreover, following the video-link with Switzerland dropping out, Beveridge waved before his computer’s camera, while Forrest searched to find through what console Dr De Monchy could see the court-room. The scene caused Snoopman to lose composure. But, his commissioned sketch-artist, Mr Chicken, doth drew the Shakespearean irony with mischief.

In this second snoop dispatch, compiled from snoop notes, snoop sketches and snoop sources, former Māori Television news and current affairs editor, Steve Snoopman, reports on the second installment of this courtroom theatre: SkyGate.

He finds that the lengths that the authorities have gone to, to crush a minor irritant may have as much to do with face-saving after they found their minions had reeled in an outcast public figure. When satirist Steve Braunias wrote about the case for the NZ Herald, the print headline “Is this really breaking a butterfly on a wheel?” — referenced a famous line from Alexander Pope’s 1735 poem to describe persecution.

The circumstances that Braunias witnessed in court forced him to reference the metaphor of ‘breaking a butterfly on a wheel’, which described such extreme lengths that New Zealand’s authorities had gone to persecute Gunn and Clark. Ironically, the pair were part of a small dissenting team which included lawyers, who helped stop the persecution of the Patelesio family in Tokelau.

Did their efforts doth ruffle feathers in the Ardern family? The Police prosecutor claimed the Patelesio family’s plight was not relevant to the case. Yet, former Dawn Raider, Ross Ardern, was the Administrator of Tokelau, and as the highest official he had been involved in the Pfizer ‘vaccination’ project from its inception. Then, he was replaced in mid-2022.

Against the backdrop of the Pfizer shots killing at a rate of 1 Kiwi per 1100 doses, the Snoopman scratched notes, looking up at moments worth saving visually to memory, with his Hippocampus organ. Such moments, as when a former Senior Constable, Ray Cobb, testified that if he acted the way the two police officers had, back when he was a country cop, he would not be in court because “[he] would be dead.”

Beveridge attempted to diminish his standing since only a minority of his policing career was in the city. However, Cobb countered saying as a solo officer with no backup, he applied sound policing that involved communicating effectively to de-escalate situations to resolve conflicts as peacefully as possible. Cobb said the Police Officers escalated a situation that could have resolved in a few minutes.

With his case in tatters, Beveridge submitted to Judge Forrest — without blushing — that Police cannot be criminally liable for their actions if they believe there were right and justified at the time.

Lawyer for the defence, Matthew Hague, summed up that the two Policemen escalated a calm scene into a fracas in a matter of seconds. Mr Hague said on the matter of the physical contact, Liz Gunn is not criminally liable. Beveridge claimed Gunn admitted she was bullying Kolodeznaya. For the record, Hague corrected Beveridge. Gunn did not. (Snoop memory and snoop notes confirm).

On the contrary, Kolodeznaya lingered in the witness box and apologized saying “we may have crossed the line.” But, Judge Forrest was looking at her notes and no one, bar Snoopman, was listening.

Judge Forrest reserved her decision for May 21 in the Manukau District Court.

See full story on Snoopman News: SkyGate: After Gunn’s Trial, Ex-Cop says “the Police literally jumped the gun”.

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3 COMMENTS

  1. NZ police have soiled themselves, noy only with this incident.
    But the polit-functionaries and top brass of police do not care how frontline cops are misused and abused for NZ’s deep state mafia, now officially invested in by Blackrock.
    New Zealand is going down with the rest of the West, with the ‘justice’ system severely bias and corrupted.
    This will end in revolt.

  2. Kiwi s are going to develop guerilla technics to get rid of blackrock.
    That is, have a place where you form a community to be self reliant. And refuse to pay taxes to the govt. The Amish are a good example on how to set it up
    Money is the key issue. Without it no government can sustain police forces etc

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