Saturday, February 14, 2004

Rob Robinson worked in Rotorua

NZ Herald
February 14, 2004
Rob Robinson worked in Rotorua
by Patrick Gower

Police Commissioner Rob Robinson worked for a short time as a policeman in Rotorua, with the officers that Louise Nicholas has accused of pack rape. Mr Robinson, who was a sergeant in the Rotorua CIB between October and December 1985, might have to give evidence to the inquiries into the allegations.

Mrs Nicholas alleges she was raped and violated with a police baton by Rotorua officers Clint Rickards, Brad Shipton and Bob Schollum in a police house in about 1986. All three strongly deny the accusations. Mr Robinson had spent most of 1985 off on leave without pay and was in the throes of leaving the police on medical grounds until deciding to return after a knee reconstruction operation. In the three months Mr Robinson was in Rotorua, official police records show Mr Rickards had been selected for CIB duties and was undergoing his induction. It is understood Mr Schollum was also attached to the CIB. Mr Shipton was a uniformed officer and public records show that in October 1985 he and his wife were living in the police house where Mrs Nicholas alleges she was pack raped.

Mr Robinson declined to answer a series of questions yesterday about his time in Rotorua. He said he recalled that the Rotorua station "was a busy one at that time". But he did not want to talk about the police culture in Rotorua in the 1980s before the terms of reference of the commission of inquiry were released.

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