New Zealand police apologise for 'tone-deaf' and 'staggering' auto crash tweet

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The tweet was immediately described as "tone-deaf" and insensitive by social media users in New Zealand.

The tweet, which was posted earlier today (9 October) from the official New Zealand Police Twitter account, has now been deleted, but was quickly screen-grabbed by shocked social media users.

The New Zealand Police have taken down and apologised for a "tone-deaf" meme that received online backlash overnight.

Responding, the New Zealand Police explained that they had meant to convey how hard it is for officers to tell people of a loved one's death.

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Another poster Scott Warren wrote: "Staggering that anyone even considered tweeting that, let alone searched for the meme, drafted the tweet and then shared with the world!". 'Yes some clown from the NZ Police Dept is trying to be amusing about people dying in road crashes but failing spectacularly.

On Monday the New Zealand police posted a gif image of comedian Steve Carell from the United States version of The Office with a slight grin on his face.

A spokesperson from New Zealand police public affairs unit told The Guardian: "We feel awful about this mistake".

Ms Jones said social media was "a hugely important channel" and police appreciated the prompt feedback from the community, "who pointed out the inappropriateness of the tweet".

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'We are extremely sorry and will learn from this'.

The tweet, which has since been deleted, resulted in hundreds of angry messages.

Police were trying to raise the issue of road safety, she said.

In a written statement, police deputy chief executive Karen Jones said the tweet "was quickly deleted after we realised the imagery was wrong and insensitive". "Thx (sic) for feedback".

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