Officer O'Leary is a police officer of the Wellington Police Force, and a member of the Wellington Police Paranormal Unit.


Young O'Leary

O'Leary as a child.

Early lifeEdit

O’Leary and her brother Brendan were raised by their parents in Mount Victoria, Wellington.[3] She served as a prefect while studying at St. Carrietta’s Girls High School.[2] As an adult, she joined the Wellington Police Force and was partnered with Officer Kyle Minogue.

What We Do in the Shadows (film)Edit

Investigating a Te Aro flat

Minogue and O'Leary interrogate Viago.

In 2013, O'Leary, along with Officer Minogue, responded to a noise complaint and reports of a forced entry at a flat in Te Aro. They inspected the place, but as they were hypnotised by the vampire Viago, they simply recommended installing some smoke detectors, as they were under the impression that the occupants had been barbecuing inside. The officers failed to notice the corpses of Petyr and a vampire hunter, which O'Leary mistook for a passed out drunk man.[4]

One night in June, the officers were called to a park where a young man, Stu, had been fatally disembowelled. They assumed his injuries were caused by a nearby dog that was to be put down. However as Stu was carried into an ambulance, he suddenly sprang to life and ran away.[4]

Wellington Paranormal Season 1Edit

Minogue and O'Leary pilot

Minogue and O'Leary introduce themselves to the documentary crew.

Sometime following, the two police officers began to be followed by a documentary crew. Minogue assisted O'Leary after she came across a young girl profusely vomiting. Attempting to get her name, the girl called herself Bazu'aal in a deep voice and threw Minogue a fair way away. They took her back to the police station for seemingly being drunk and disorderly, and assaulting a police officer. They then sat in on a briefing, before Sergeant Ruawai Maaka asked to speak to them. He welcomed them into the station's Paranormal Unit, explaining how they had previous instances of seemingly-possessed individuals calling themselves Bazu'aal. Minogue and O'Leary left to an interrogation room, where the girl was seated. She spouted words about the dead rising, before Maaka entered, hoping to have some words with her. Tricking Maaka into thinking she was fine, the possessed girl escaped, all three police running after her. Leaving the situation, Minogue and O'Leary responded to a noise complaint, finding it to be the girl's home. They came across a man named Gary, who was floating on the ceiling. He came down and suddenly seemed fine, and so they left. On their drive back, they noticed his wife running by the car as they were doing 50km/h. They both exited the vehicle, pursuing the woman on foot. O'Leary got stuck on a fence while Minogue nearly caught up, only to find a possessed dog, taunting him. Minogue and O'Leary returned to the police station, where Maaka revealed that a single entity was possessing all of the individuals. Connecting the dots, they all decided to investigate the bucket fountain monument on Cuba Street, joined by Constable Parker, watching as it tipped blood into the fountain. They noticed the possessed dog from previously, Minogue sneaking up on it and capturing it. However, he was abruptly strangled by a tramp, now possessed. The tramp held Minogue up as O'Leary successfully exorcised the man, ultimately making Bazu'aal drop Minogue, saving him from damnation in Hell.[5]

Extraterrestrial bud

O'Leary and Minogue encounter the bud of an extraterrestrial flora.

After being briefed on a cow being found up a tree, Minogue and O'Leary were sent to investigate it by Sergeant Maaka, believing it to be a paranormal occurrence. On their way there, they encountered a ravaged farmer, who they simply believed to be hungover. Arriving at the property in the country, they met Muzza, who told them that his brother Bazza had put the cow up the tree, directing them to his home. They questioned him about the cow, before he showed them around the property. They came across crop circles, finding buds that shot them both with orange dust. They brought one back to the police station, explaining the situation to Maaka and noting that the bud had actually grown in the jar since they'd taken it. Determining the situation to be paranormal, Minogue and O'Leary returned that night, suddenly noticing flashing lights in the distance, discovering it to only be police lights that Minogue had left on. They suddenly noticed a naked man running, thinking it to be either Muzza or Bazza, though it was in fact Buzza. Investigating the crop circles again, they found plants that weren't there before. They took photos with the flora to show Sergeant Maaka, before leaving, but noticed they were being followed by the flora. Minogue was shot with some acid, causing them to run away, noticing a half-eaten cow on their way. Maaka suddenly appeared with some weed killer, but it didn't help them, and all three cops were attacked by the floras' tenticles. The police were eventually able to trap the flora in Bazza's shed. The following morning they spoke to Bazza, asking that he let them know if he saw anything weird, being introduced to his identical-looking family. When the Paranormal Unit weren't looking, the three aliens locked in the shed escaped, taking the forms of the cops and escaping in a UFO.[6]

O'Leary mirror

O'Leary finds a ghost message at 23 Tukariri Street.

Responding to another noise complaint, Minogue and O'Leary reached 23 Tukariri Street in Khandallah. They entered the house, finding a party and attempting to get them to quiet down. However, they suddenly disappeared when O'Leary pulled the plug on their music. Going to investigate, Minogue ran into a man with a disfigured face, running to tell O'Leary. They reported back to the police station the following day, where Maaka told them that the house itself had noise complaints for over 40 years, despite being unoccupied. Realising it was definitely paranormal, Sergeant Maaka called in Chloe Patterson, a medium, to assist. She claimed to be communicating with someone, who Minogue identified as his grandfather, leaving O'Leary skeptical as Minogue's grandfather was still alive. They took her to the house, where she attempted to communicate with spirits. A spirit actually appearing, Chloe ran off, chased by Minogue and, subsequently, O'Leary. Searching the place for Chloe, they discovered another spirit, that of an individual with a crocheted blanket over them. Terrified, they accidentally split up. Minogue discovered a bathroom, in which he found a couple from the 1970s bathing in a spa pool. Closing the door, he opened it back up to simply find the regular bathroom. He finally found Patterson, though she was quickly taken by someone from the bathroom. Struggling at first, Minogue eventually made his way into the bathroom, finding nothing again. He called to O'Leary to meet in the bathroom, but they mixed up and were in ones on different levels. O'Leary joined Minogue, but they couldn't make the room with the spa pool appear. As they left, they encountered the disfigured man again, running into a room. They were joined by Sergeant Maaka, who told them of some findings. He explained how people had died in a freak night in 1977 - two people in a spa pool electrocution, two people in a water bed explosion, one via asphyxiation in a crocheted blanket, and one via asphyxiation in a cheese fondue set. They recognised most of these, having realised they'd met most of their ghosts. Determined to find the spa pool room again, the three of them went to the downstairs bathroom, but Minogue had no luck. O'Leary, however, managed to open it, finding Mrs. Patterson bathing with the couple, who she introduced as Peter and Rochelle. Raymond St John, the house's deceased owner, suddenly possessed Chloe, before floating away. They followed him, finding the party to be occurring again in the living room. Minogue interrupted them, explaining how they were all ghosts, and convincing St John to let them all go on to the afterlife. They subsequently arrested Raymond.[7]

Minogue and O'Leary had to investigate multiple attacks on vehicles and dogs being stolen within a couple of nights. They encountered several people fleeing what they described as a werewolf, but the officers only found a confused drunk woman, Sheena. Minogue interrogated her at the station but Maaka concluded she wasn’t a werewolf and asked the officers to drive her home. On the way back, the clouds uncovered the full moon and she began to transform into a werewolf in the police car. They all fled the car and Minogue eventually lured a human Sheena back with a sausage roll. As the officers interviewed Sheena in her house, she realised she had gained lycanthropy from her ex-boyfriend Dion and stormed into his house. Dion and Sheena had a loud argument, accusing each other of cheating, and started making out. Realising that there was nothing they could do, O’Leary and Minogue left the house as the couple began fighting.[8]

Nick ritual

O'Leary interrupts a vampire ritual.

Minogue and O'Leary were sent to investigate ghost sightings in the Lower Hutt region, but all they found was a plastic bag floating in the wind. The bag turned out to be a yōkai, which later tried to attack Maaka at the station. That night, the officers went to Wellington Central Hospital following a report of nineteen blood bags going missing. The blood bank officer, Nick, successfully hypnotised the two cops into not arresting him. Maaka correctly guessed that Nick was a vampire and sent the officers to interrogate him again. On the way to the hospital, they found Nick and several hooded figures taking part in a satanic ritual while circling a tied naked man. Nick claimed they were only roleplaying and hypnotised the man into claiming he was completely fine. Minogue and O'Leary then encountered multiple clowns jaywalking, dancing in the road getting in and out of a small car, but the clowns drove away when the officers were speaking to the camera. They then went into a cemetery to investigate sightings of “ghosts”, which turned out to be goths, but they successfully caught Nick disguised as a delivery man. Nick was forced to admit that he stole the blood bags for a party and was arrested. In the police car, Nick slipped out of the handcuffs and used the distraction to hypnotise O'Leary and Minogue into letting him go free and forgetting about everything that happened.[9]

The Paranormal Unit realised that a businessman arrested by fellow officers Donovan and Laupepe was a zombie. They failed to notice the zombie attacking Donovan, and he became a zombie while on duty and infected Laupepe. In order to stop the zombie virus spreading further, Minogue and O’Leary arrested two people the zombie cops attacked, a drive through server and a boy racer. As the zombie officers drove into Courtenay Place, the Paranormal Unit, with the help of Parker, tried to lure them into a police car. They ended up accidentally locking them in the car with Maaka, but the zombies stopped attacking when O'Leary used the radio to tell them to stop. Realising that the zombies obeyed radio commands, the Paranormal Unit took Donovan and Laupepe back to the station and had them assigned to desk jobs.[1]

Wellington Paranormal Season 2Edit

Wellington Harbour

O'Leary and Minogue at Wellington Harbour.

The Paranormal Unit headed to Wellington Harbour to investigate the disappearances of ten anglers. Maaka suspected this was caused by a taniwha, and his fears were confirmed when the unit saw a huge taniwha on the boat sonar. They sailed back to the shore, where Constable Parker was camping, but found his tent empty. O’Leary spotted huge footprints and they followed them to a cave, where they found all the missing anglers alive and stuck to the cave wall to be used as food for the taniwha. As they all left the cave, a huge taniwha appeared and ate one of the captive fishermen. The unit followed the taniwha and drove to Oriental Bay. As they took the time to pay respects to Parker, he suddenly appeared, admitting that he left the tent to meet his mother living nearby. Two taniwha then surfaced from the water and started mating, leading Maaka to conclude that the beasts were unlikely to cause any future harm.[10]

O'Leary and Neve

O'Leary gains information from Neve.

O’Leary and Minogue headed to a corner shop to investigate a shoplifting complaint. As the shopkeeper described how the bag mysteriously floated out the shop, another bag left the store in the same way. At the station, Parker inspected the CCTV footage and briefly saw three teenage girls appearing in a reflection. O’Leary recognised their uniform as the one of her old school, St. Carrietta’s Girls High School. O’Leary and Minogue went to the school to find the principal, Mrs. Hopper, and the students hesitant to reveal any details about strange incidents that had recently occurred, including an explosion in the library. One girl, Neve Robinson, revealed to O’Leary that three girls, the Briannas, were using telekinetic powers to bully students who previously picked on them and asked “too many questions”. In response, the Briannas tried to intimidate Neve and the officers with their powers. Maaka correctly guessed that the Briannas had gained witchcraft from a spellbook in the school library and sent the officers back to the school at night. There, O’Leary took the spellbook from the Briannas and tried to lecture the girls on how they had become bullies themselves. The Briannas tried to kill the officers anyway but were stopped when Minogue tased the spellbook, which rebounded onto them. The girls were sentenced to community service.[2]

Acting upon complaints from locals about the constant horn tooting in Mount Victoria Tunnel, O’Leary and Minogue put up a sign at the tunnel entrance stating “PLEASE DO NOT USE YOUR HORN UNNECESSARILY”. As the sign went up, the officers were surprised to see the ghost of a police officer in old-fashioned uniform suddenly appear. Maaka speculated that the horn tooting in the tunnel may have deterred supernatural entities and received a report of a commotion in a pub in Mount Cook involving the same policeman. The officer, later found by Maaka to be a policeman from the 1930s named Bill Miller, went on a rampage across Wellington, arresting students for wearing inappropriate clothing and trying to shut down pubs for being open after 6pm. He also beat up O’Leary and Minogue with a baton when they tried to apprehend him. Maaka eventually lured Miller back to the tunnel with malicious bell ringing. There, O’Leary informed Miller that he was no longer a police officer, leaving him upset. To keep his sense of purpose, Maaka put Miller on duty to patrol the tunnel, on the condition that he remain invisible and not use his whistle. Miller accepted and vanished upon being driven into by a car. Minogue covered the “DO NOT” on the sign, thus resuming the tooting and keeping all spirits at bay.[11]

O'Leary clone

Minogue encounters a clone of O'Leary.

The Paranormal Unit were shocked to see a distorted body brought into the station morgue that looked exactly like Minogue, apart from having green genitalia. O’Leary and Minogue headed to Hemahema, where the body was found, and met Bazza again, who the officers recognised but could not recall how they met him. Bazza described the officers as “one of the many” and told them to go to a nearby motel. There, the officers found multiple hostile copies of themselves, some more plant-like than others. Maaka eventually appeared and led the officers into a room with several clones. He turned out to be another clone who had lured the officers there to be studied and eaten. The officers were locked in a cold pantry with the real Maaka, who was taken hostage by the clones upon arriving for backup. He revealed that all the clones are extraterrestrial floras by showing them the documentary footage that was filmed of them last year while investigating Bazza’s farm. He pointed out that the footage revealed the aliens they had locked in a shed escaped while assuming the cops’ appearances. O’Leary was able to open the pantry door to freedom. Maaka fought against his clone, who was defeated when O’Leary hands Maaka a slug from Minogue’s salad and Maaka stuffed it in the clone’s mouth. The clone violently vomited and fled. The Paranormal Unit armed themselves with slugs and chased all the floras outside, where they were all collected by a UFO.[12]

After an extended period of little paranormal activity occurring, the Paranormal Unit were then asked to investigate a 1985 Nissan 300ZX – Z31 mysteriously disappearing. After interviewing the car’s new owner Trent, the officers found the car being driven by itself with a young boy inside. The car was stopped and O’Leary took the child back to the station while Minogue attempted to drive the car back to its owner, only to lose control and resort to having it towed back. At the station, the unit discovered the car originally belonged to a young man named Shane Thompson during the 1980s until he drove it off a bank after his girlfriend Sharon left him. The car vanished again and the officers went to Shane’s place of residence in the hope of finding it there. Visiting the house, they found Sharon living there and the Nissan arrived as they interviewed her. Sharon got inside and was able to communicate with Shane’s ghost in the mirror, but when she explained that she could not resume a relationship with a dead man, he drove the car away with her trapped inside it. The officers chased after it and were eventually able to catch up and get in, only to get locked in with Sharon as it headed to the bank. Shane only stopped the car just short of the bank when Sharon insisted that she would think of him as a ‘wanker’ if he killed them. Shane and Sharon reconciled in the Nissan before Shane drove a ghost version of the car away into the afterlife.[13]

Scorpion robot

O'Leary is attacked by the scorpion robot.

Sergeant Maaka informed the Paranormal Unit that hundreds of thefts of outdated technology occurred around Mount Victoria over the last two nights. All the disappearances occurred in two concentric circles, with the potential third area covering O'Leary’s childhood home and its nearby radio communications tower in the centre. O’Leary headed to her former home with Minogue and they meet her mother, who recalled fond memories of O’Leary playing with her first mobile phone, which she had kept in a draw. That night, the officers held a stakeout, leaving multiple outdated phones on the kitchen floor as bait. The phones started lighting up, ringing and vibrating, before forming a large “snake” on the ground, taking Minogue’s Taser and escaping through the cat flap. The officers discovered multiple robots outside, all formed from phones and other gadgets. As Maaka arrived, the officers struggle to apprehend the robots as they disperse across the area and O’Leary was tased by the snake robot, which has now increased in size to become a scorpion robot. Maaka brought Ben, a member of the technological crimes division of the police force, to help investigate. They suspected the tower may be the cause of the robots and set up plans to hack the tower’s mainframe from a nearby van. The officers went into their car to try and find the robots, only to be smoked out of the car by a small robot made of vape pens. They exited at the base of the tower and witnessed all the robots gathering to make up one large humanoid ‘mobot’. The mobot spoke to the officers, explaining that it is primarily run from the cell phone O’Leary had not used since 2004. It expressed dismay at being made of parts that have been resigned to draws, insisting that it is just as capable as new technology. An “update” appeared on the screen of the mobot and it asked O’Leary to activate it since it had vape pens for fingers. Feeling sorry for it, O’Leary agreed, and the mobot declared itself free – to erase the human race and replace it with super-intelligent robots. It started to climb the tower so it could transmit to all available technology, but stalled halfway and fell to pieces, presumably unable to handle the new updates.[14]

On the afternoon of Christmas Eve, Minogue and O’Leary were asked to investigate a report of a Santa working at Tawa Mall terrorising children and refusing to leave. After seeing the Santa’s demonic appearance and actions, O’Leary realises that the mall’s representative, Ian, had accidentally summoned Satan for the job due to a typo on a fax machine message. The officers questioned Satan, who claimed that he intended to stay in the mall grotto as a new realm to rule over. He was eventually persuaded to leave and head to a nearby printing store to update his business card. The officers were then requested to investigate a large amount of meat going missing at a barbeque party. They met the party’s host, Kevin, who also reported that his elderly aunt Flo has also disappeared. The cops found a vortex in his garden, which Minogue entered and found himself in a strange void full of objects that have gone missing. He quickly found Flo, holding the tray of meat, and rescued her from the void. That evening, the officers were called to a family home where one of the Christmas presents, a creepy doll, burst out of its wrapping and claimed to be possessed by a murderer, leaving the family trapped outside. Minogue and O’Leary entered the house and were ambushed by the doll, who tried to attack them with a knife. The cops eventually fought back with the family’s presents and O’Leary neutralised the doll with a cricket bat intended as a gift. The officers were then called to an office party where a worker named Jeff had disappeared. Security footage of the building showed Jeff disappearing into a photocopier while copying his own bottom. Correctly assuming that the photocopier is another vortex, Minogue sat on the glass and disappeared when the copy button was pressed. Minogue eventually called O’Leary back, revealing himself to be with Jeff in the spa pool of Kevin’s house, having wandered back through the vortex in the yard. That night, the Paranormal Unit exchanged their Secret Santa gifts: O’Leary received soap from Maaka, Minogue received a toy robot from O’Leary and Maaka received his missing childhood teddy bear, Officer Fuzzypants, which Minogue had found in the void.[15]

Other AppearancesEdit

Police Summer SafetyEdit

O'Leary appeared in all four of the Police Summer Safety road safety PSAs, warning against the dangers of driving while drunk,[16] speeding,[17] getting distracted while driving[18] and not wearing a seatbelt.[19]

What Will You Do in the Shadows?Edit

Karen O'Leary appeared in costume in an Instagram post from Second Unit, thus indicating a possible cameo in their immersive theatre performance What Will You Do in the Shadows?.[20]

Behind the ScenesEdit

  • Karen O'Leary and Mike Minogue ended up playing characters called O'Leary and Minogue in the original film because director Jemaine Clement hadn't come up with any names for their characters. He decided that O'Leary's real surname sounded really 'cop' so they decided to use it, and they also decided to use Mike Minogue's surname as well.[21]



  1. 1.0 1.1 Yates, Paul (writer) & Clement, Jemaine (writer & director) (15 August 2018). "Zombie Cops". Wellington Paranormal. Episode 6. TVNZ 2.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Alison, Amanda (writer) & van Beek, Jackie (director) (23 October 2019). "Fear the Briannas". Wellington Paranormal. Episode 8. TVNZ 2.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Yates, Paul (writer) & Clement, Jemaine (director) (20 November 2019). "Mobots". Wellington Paranormal. Episode 12. TVNZ 2.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Clement, Jemaine & Waititi, Taika (writers and directors) (19 January 2014). What We Do in the Shadows.
  5. Yates, Paul (writer) & Clement, Jemaine (writer & director) (11 July 2018). "Demon Girl". Wellington Paranormal. Episode 1. TVNZ 2.
  6. Bracewell, Melanie (writer) & Clement, Jemaine (director) (18 July 2018). "Cop Circles". Wellington Paranormal. Episode 2. TVNZ 2.
  7. Ward, Nick (writer) & van Beek, Jackie (director) (25 July 2018). "Things That Do the Bump in the Night". Wellington Paranormal. Episode 3. TVNZ 2.
  8. Hansell, Jessica Coco (writer) & van Beek, Jackie (director) (1 August 2018). "The She Wolf of Kurimarama Street". Wellington Paranormal. Episode 4. TVNZ 2.
  9. Smith, Sam (writer) & Clement, Jemaine (director) (8 August 2018). "A Normal Night". Wellington Paranormal. Episode 5. TVNZ 2.
  10. Ward, Nick (writer) & Hewison, Dean (director) (16 October 2019). "Taniwha". Wellington Paranormal. Episode 7. TVNZ 2.
  11. Bracewell, Melanie (writer) & van Dammen, Tim (director) (30 October 2019). "Mt. Vic Hooters". Wellington Paranormal. Episode 9. TVNZ 2.
  12. Gonzalez-Macuer, Cori (writer) & van Dammen, Tim (director) (6 November 2019). "Copy Cops". Wellington Paranormal. Episode 10. TVNZ 2.
  13. Yates, Paul (writer) & van Beek, Jackie (director) (13 November 2019). "Haunted Nissan". Wellington Paranormal. Episode 11. TVNZ 2.
  14. Yates, Paul (writer) & Clement, Jemaine (director) (20 November 2019). "Mobots". Wellington Paranormal. Episode 12. TVNZ 2.
  15. Yates, Paul (writer) & Hewison, Dean (director) (19 December 2019). "Christmas Special". Wellington Paranormal. Episode 13. TVNZ 2.
  16. "Police Summer Safety – Ghost" - Vimeo
  17. "Police Summer Safety – Speed Demon" - Vimeo
  18. "Police Summer Safety – UFO" - Vimeo
  19. "Police Summer Safety – Zombie" - Vimeo
  20. "Second Unit" - Instagram
  21. "'Wellington Paranormal' Trivia" - iMDb
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