Arguing heard before killing
Neighbours living around the flat where a Feilding woman suffered injuries last Thursday that led to her death say they heard arguing that night.
Karen Makoare, 49, died in Palmerston North Hospital on Tuesday, about 11.30am, surrounded by family, who had travelled from Hawke's Bay to be with her.
Her injuries remained "unexplained" until yesterday, when an autopsy was carried out and it was revealed Ms Makoare had suffered a serious head injury.
Police have launched a homicide investigation.
Neighbour Richard Clapham said another neighbour had heard prolonged arguing coming from the flat on the night Ms Makoare was injured, to the point where they considered knocking on the door.
She had lived there only about two months with a partner, and they mostly kept to themselves, he said.
Having spoken to other neighbours, he understood Ms Makoare had been thrown up against a concrete wall in the flat.
The night she was injured was a "crazy night", with a couple of unrelated fires in and near the street, but he didn't hear anything from the flats.
The man who heard the argument was "pretty upset", Mr Clapham said. It was not the first time he had heard arguing coming from the flat. Mr Clapham said they lived within the police cordon for five days and police were "really thorough". Living in the cordon was "stressful", he said - residents could come and go, but visitors had to have their names taken down.
"It's a very quiet street, I've been here nearly eight years. The thing I like about it is all the neighbours get along and we all look after each other, it's a nice street.
"The thing about Feilding is, it's a beautiful town to live in, but when things go wrong, they seem to go wrong real bad."
A man, believed to be the woman's partner, had returned to the flat on Tuesday night and had been seen packing up. He was outside yesterday hosing down the front wall of the flat, but refused to comment when approached by the Standard.
Detective Senior Sergeant Craig Sheridan said police now had to consider how Ms Makoare was injured, and they would be seeking further advice from medical experts.
They would not have a suspect until they made that determination.
However, they were not looking to speak to anyone else in relation to the investigation, and those people they had spoken to were co-operating, he said.
- Manawatu Standard
Should Manawatu's earthquake-prone buildings be yellow-stickered?Related story: Council won't use earthquake-risk stickers