Trio charged over double Kawerau shooting
Three men have been charged with attempted murder following the shooting of two men in Kawerau yesterday.
"Throughout yesterday a number of properties in the town were searched and one of those searches during the evening resulted in a 29-year-old local man being located by police," a police statement said.
"Subsequent to that arrest two local men aged 21 and 52 presented themselves at Kawerau police station."
All three men had been charged with attempted murder and would appear in Whakatane District Court today.
The possibility of further arrests had not been ruled out.
The two men, aged 38 and 48, shot in the incident remained in a critical condition in Waikato Hospital, police said today.
One had been shot in the stomach and the other in the chest, at a property in river Rd about 6.15am.
"Everything we know so far indicates that these two men were targeted by a group of people," police acting area commander Greg Standen said yesterday.
"We have nothing to suggest that there are fears for anyone else's safety at this stage. I want to reassure the community that we are across this incident.''
He added: "We have a large number of staff in the area and are confident that with the hard work of our team and the assistance from the public we can move towards an early resolution."
Tonight police said no arrests had been made but three local men were assisting them with their inquiries.
A fourth man had been arrested and charged with unlawful possession of a firearm following a search of a Valley Road property, but police said the arrest did not directly relate to the shooting.
Armed police descended on a Valley Rd house, not far from where the shooting took place, after getting some information about 9.45am.
They interviewed two people there.
Earlier, an ambulance spokesman said staff had to wait about 25 minutes before given clearance by police to be able to treat the patients.
The injured men were then flown to Waikato Hospital in critical condition.
A man who lives next door to the house where the shooting took place said the house where it occurred was normally "really quiet".
Philip Savage, 47, didn't hear any shots but woke up to see police swarming around his neighbour's house. Cordons were also blocking the road.
Savage said he was friendly with the man who lived alone next door, and he'd never seen anything out of the ordinary there.
"What I want to know is whether it was random or, what was it? Domestic or what?" he said.
"I talked to the cops and they're not saying nothing. I don't think they even know quite what's happened. It's a bit scary."
Savage has lived on the street for 13 years and he said it's "a good little neighbourhood we have here".
"It's all right," he said.
"There's a school across the road and it's quite private. I'd just like to know more about what's going on, for security."
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