discouraging people from doing police work after the family
of an Argentinian woman who died after a vehicle accident
were told of her death by people other than police.
Between 6.15am and 7am on Thursday, Carolina Patron Costas
(23) of Argentina, was killed when the vehicle she was
driving veered off the road and hit a tree.
There were no other vehicles involved and the incident has
been referred to the coroner.
Yesterday, Senior Constable Chris Blackford said the woman's
family was first contacted by someone other than police or
the Argentinian Embassy.
Subsequently, a family member called the Queenstown police
Snr Const Blackford said that in most cases, police did not
give such news over the telephone.
Effects of it on a family were unknown and police could
"handle it much more sympathetically", he said.
"In this case, the constable was put in a position where he
had to [confirm the news] over the phone," he said.
"Sometimes the right thing is to do nothing."
Snr Const Blackford understood a friend mentioned the
accident to another friend, who told the parents.
With social media, it was becoming easier for people to
spread information, he said.
Ms Patron Costas was on her way to Millbrook Resort, where
she had been working in the food and beverage department
Millbrook Resort head of operations Brian Howie said staff
were "stunned and shocked" at her death.
He described her as a "very well liked and respected member
"She had been here since August [and] came with a friend she
had been travelling with."
Mr Howie said thoughts were with her family overseas.
"These things are so much harder when the family is so far