Manhunt after Opiki home invasion

Last updated 10:22 30/04/2014
Home invasion
MURRAY WILSON/FAIRFAX NZ

INVESTIGATING: Police at the scene of the home invasion in Opiki.

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Police are advising a man stabbed in the stomach with a pair of scissors during a home invasion to seek medical help before his wound turns deadly.

A 45-year-old Opiki woman was woken by a noise in her home on Poplar Rd, between Palmerston North and Shannon, about 6.40am yesterday.

Thinking it was her partner returning from milking, she was instead confronted by an intruder, armed with what was believed to be a knife. The intruder started to make demands and threats, leading to a struggle. A second intruder joined the tussle, suffering a scissor wound to the stomach in the process. The two men fled and sped off in a vehicle shortly afterwards.

Detective Sergeant Dave Thompson said the incident was "an emotional and frightening experience" for the woman, who locked herself in the bathroom to make calls after the intruders' departure.

She suffered minor cuts from the struggle, but was checked and discharged from Palmerston North Hospital yesterday.

Thompson wouldn't confirm how the intruder came to have the wound, but said from how it had been described, it was not a superficial graze.

Advice they'd had from medical professionals suggested it could get worse over the next few days and there was a high chance of infection.

"The potential for infection is significant, and it could be way more serious for him, even life threatening."

He appealed to the intruder to seek medical treatment and not to "try and wait it out". Thompson said there was no indication as to why the house had been targeted, the couple had only recently moved in and the woman did not recognise the intruders, he said. The home invasion was "disturbing", but it was not common, he said.

A scene examination was carried out and completed at the house yesterday, but they did not expect to interview the woman until today.

"This was a violent and planned home invasion and while we have no further identifying details of the offenders or the vehicle that was used, we believe that others may have known about the offenders' plans and we encourage anyone with information to contact police."

The first man is described as a Maori with medium length dark hair, aged between 18 and 20 and of stocky build.

He was wearing dark coloured clothing at the time, has a noticeable missing tooth and a silver sleeper with a ball in the centre in his left ear. The second man is described as a blonde-haired European, about 183cm-tall, and aged between 18 and 20 years. He was wearing a grey hoody at the time, has short blonde hair, or a shaven head, and received the stomach wound.

Anyone who saw a vehicle speeding and driving dangerously in the Opiki area between 6.50am to 7.15am yesterday, or with information, can contact Constable Nick Parlane on 06 215 4962 or the anonymous Crimestoppers line on 0800 555 111.

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- Manawatu Standard

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