Police investigating a suspected hit-and-run in rural New Plymouth are focusing on the car the dead woman was found dumped in.
The 45-year-old woman's body was found in a carpark at a scenic reserve on the outskirts of the city at about 2.30pm yesterday. Police said she had been killed about 10km away.
A 27-year-old man has been charged with manslaughter.
The death has taken the Labour weekend road toll to seven, with the official holiday period not over until 6am on Tuesday.
Police believe mother of two, Anne Elizabeth McCullough, was hit by a purple 1987 Holden Commodore Saloon, before being taken to the carpark at the Meeting of the Waters on State Highway 3.
Detective senior sergeant Grant Coward said McCullough had been out running on upper Frankley Rd sometime between 1pm and 2pm when the incident happened.
''It's just an absolute tragedy,'' Coward said.
Coward said police's main focus was now on the vehicle.
''The thing for us at the moment, which is critical, is this vehicle.
"We are appealing to the public for sightings of that distinctive vehicle at any stage yesterday, but in particular, the upper Frankley Rd, Carrington Rd, Baker Rd, Mangorei Rd, Junction Rd and the Meeting of the Waters.''
The Meeting of the Waters remained cordoned off while forensic scientists conducted a scene examination.
A section of Frankley Rd was also under cordon while the Central Districts Serious Crash Unit examine what is believed to be the scene of the accident.
The man will appear in the New Plymouth District Court tomorrow.
If anyone has any information contact New Plymouth Police on 06 7599456.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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