Sunday, 23 April 2017 - 11:21am
Bay of Plenty
At about 10 am on Saturday 22 April 2017 Police received multiple emergency calls after a gang altercation at the Kuirau Park markets near Rotorua’s CBD.
Reports from the public were that there was an incident between members of rival gangs, and that shots had been fired. This happened near a children’s playground in the middle of the Saturday morning market, while the area was teeming with shoppers.
A short time later, Police located a vehicle with damage consistent with a shot being fired at it. An examination of the scene confirmed to Police that a firearm had been involved.
Following lines of enquiry after receiving information from the public, Police yesterday afternoon executed a search warrant at a Rotorua address and a 27-year-old man was arrested with the assistance of members of the Armed Offender's Squad. The man will appear in the Rotorua District Court on Monday 24 April, where he will face firearms and disorder charges.
Detective Senior Sergeant John Wilson of the Bay of Plenty Police says Police take this type of offending very seriously and enquiries into this matter are ongoing.
“The actions of these individuals in possessing and using a firearm in such a public place posed a very real and significant risk to innocent members of the public going about their business with their families on a sunny Saturday morning.”
“I am aware that there were many people present when this incident occurred who may be able to help this investigation. If you witnessed this incident I urge you to come forward and make contact with the Rotorua Police. Police are also keen to obtain any mobile phone footage that may have been captured by witnesses.”
“It is only through sheer luck that no one was hurt, and Police are determined to identify all those involved and hold them to account for their actions.”
Anyone with information relevant to this investigation is asked to contact the Rotorua Police Station on 07 348 0099. Alternatively information can be provided anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
Issued by Police Media Centre.