Law & Order

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New Year's Eve celebrations at the Napier Soundshell, including the midnight fireworks display, went off without incident, according to police.

Police reported a "quiet and incident-free" night across the Eastern District on New Year's Eve last night, with a marked improvement in behaviour at the Rhythm and Vines festival compared to last year.

There were only four arrests at the festival last night - three for disorder and one for assault. Police said the arrest numbers were low considering the high levels of drunkenness of many people staying in campsites adjoining the festival site.

The two campsites were independently run and were BYO, which meant campers could bring in any amount of alcohol. Levels of intoxication at both sites rose steadily throughout the day and dozens of people were turned away when they got to the festival entrance due to being highly intoxicated.

There was one assault in one of the camping grounds about 9pm last night.

Tairawhiti Area Commander Inspector Sam Aberahama said the festival site was licensed, which meant alcohol was being sold from bars and serves were monitored.

"There was a distinct difference in the levels of intoxication in the campsites and on the festival site. We have always opposed BYO at events and this has not changed our stance," Mr Aberahama said.

Inspector Andy Sloan of Hawke's Bay Police said it was a quiet and uneventful night in Napier and Hastings and the beach settlements of Waimarama and Mahia. There were two arrests for disorderly behaviour.

Behaviour overall had been good and a lot of families had attended the New Year celebrations at the Napier Soundshell that went off without incident, Mr Sloan said.

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