Man charged after attack on bus driver in Ponsonby

By rnz.co.nz and is republished with permission

A man has been charged after a bus driver was assaulted in central Auckland on Monday.

Police said they responded to reports of the “violent and unprovoked” assault on a bus about 4.30pm in Ponsonby.

“It’s understood the man boarded the bus on Ponsonby Road without tagging on,” Inspector Dave Christoffersen said.

“The driver has then asked the man to get off the bus, and it is alleged he punched and kicked her in response, and when she pulled over he got off the bus and ran up Ponsonby Road.”

Christoffersen said it was a “completely unacceptable” attack on someone who was just doing their job.

A man found a short distance away was taken into custody, he said.

“Police are now providing support to the driver who is understandably very shaken by what has occurred.

“Thankfully, no serious injuries were reported.”

Auckland Transport public transport relations group manager Rachel Cara said the agency was saddened by the incident.

“We are working with police and our bus operator to assist with investigations and ensure that the driver is receiving the support they need,” Cara said.

“Safety is our top priority on the network.”

The 39-year-old man has been charged and will appear in Auckland District Court on 26 April.

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