FA’AUI Pes Sia’atoutai

The New Zealand Bravery Decoration
Special Honours List - 14 October 2006
On the afternoon of 28 November 2005, Pes Sia’atoutai Fa’aui, an environmental officer employed by the Waitakere City Council, was on duty in Railside Avenue, Henderson. Nearby, a man with a knife had stabbed and injured a sport shop owner, who had to flee his shop after receiving stab injuries to his back, stomach, arm and hand. The offender then crossed the road and fatally stabbed a 65-year-old man who was getting into his car.

A police officer arrived on the scene and the offender advanced on him with the knife. The police officer repeatedly called on the man to stop but he continued to advance even after being shot three times from five shots fired at him by the officer. Witnesses describe the man increasing the determination of his advance on the police officer, who was retreating backwards.

As the police officer was turning to evade his attacker, Mr Fa’aui tackled the offender from behind, hitting him with his right shoulder into his back, while bringing his right arm around his front. In doing so, he received deep cuts to a number of his fingers, which had come into contact with the knife. The tackle succeeded in knocking the offender to the ground, after which two other police officers who had just arrived on the scene were able to subdue and handcuff him. Mr Fa’aui’s action prevented any further possibility of injury or death to others in the vicinity, including the police officer who had originally confronted the offender as well as the offender himself.

Mr Fa’aui’s act of exceptional bravery led to the arrest of a dangerous offender and possibly saved a police officer from serious injury.

New Zealand Bravery Decoration