Police last night arrested a man in his late sixties after a series of incidents in central Auckland.
Officers were called to an address on Albert Street after reports of an elderly man attacking cyclists.
Student Tanya Molineux, 18, was cycling down Albert Street just after 5pm last night. “This crazy wild-eyed guy just came at me,” she said. “He rushed at me from the pavement and chucked a rock at my front wheel.” She fell from her bicycle, but apart from some minor abrasions was unhurt.
“As I was getting up he began yelling at me and hitting me with a cane. He said young people were good for nothing and that the police should just shoot me. I was really scared. The guy looked like he could have been my grandfather, but he was just mean.”
Witnesses say the elderly man then stormed down Wakefield Street, where the second incident occurred.
A cycle courier, who would not be named, said the man was carrying a brick. “He looked like just some sweet old guy, but I didn’t pay much attention until he jumped in my way.
“He threw the brick at me. I swear he was going for my head. I swerved and crashed into a car. I was on the ground and was dazed for a while.”
The elderly man then stood over the fallen cyclist. “He looked down at me and started to laugh. Then he told me I’d got what was coming to me. I think he also said something about Jesus.”
Bank worker Shaun Andrews briefly scuffled with the elderly man until the cyclist could escape. “He was strong for an old guy,” said Mr Andrews, “and I could smell his cigarette breath.” The man was able to break free from Mr Andrews’ hold and escape back up Wakefield Street. The man then allegedly entered a commercial building on Albert Street.
Police were at the scene within a few minutes. They entered the building and apprehended the man after a short struggle. “He put up a fight,” said one witness. “He was just going off at the cops. He kept screaming about being tasered. I think he wanted the police to shoot him.”
Police would not release details of the man, but it is believed the man was an employee of APN. He is due to appear in the Auckland District Court today on a number of charges, including assault and resisting arrest.