Police 'know identity' of shooter

KATHRYN KING
Last updated 08:49 27/11/2013

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A gunman who shot one Palmerston North man and took aim at the head of another remains at large.

Police say they know the identity of the man behind a Highbury shooting in which a 73-year-old man stared down the barrel of a shotgun and his 50-year-old son was shot in the leg as he tried to get to safety.

The younger man tackled the gunman after he turned the gun on his father outside their Duncan Place house in Highbury, Palmerston North, shortly after 10.30pm on Monday.

The injured man was in a stable condition in a Palmerston North Hospital ward, and due to undergo surgery last night.

Detective Senior Sergeant Simon Harrison said police completed a scene examination yesterday afternoon and took statements from both the victim and his father.

They were making every effort to track the gunman down, he said.

The victim's father, who did not wish to be named, said he and his son were watching rugby when a laser-like reflection outside caught his eye and he went to investigate.

He then saw a man pouring something over his son's car.

In the next instant, he looked up to see the man pointing what looked like a sawn-off shotgun at his head from about a metre away, he said.

His son came out of the house and tackled the gunman, telling his father to go back inside and call police.

His son was shot, getting caught in the leg as he stepped back into the house.

Neighbours came to their aid, and later said they saw the offender running from the scene.

The father said he didn't know the assailant, but said he was wearing a red bandanna.

A female neighbour said the injured man was a long-time resident and had lived in the house for more than 20 years.

"It's the first time we've seen this happen, but it comes, in part, with living in Highbury.

"It was quite frightening. I was getting ready for bed and I heard this almighty bang and then I saw a guy running away."

The shooter, described by another neighbour as a Pacific Islander wearing a hooded sweatshirt, shorts and no shoes, ran down an alleyway.

A neighbour who went to help, following the shooting, said the injured man and his father were standing at the front door to the house.

He was standing up and had blood on his pants.

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to contact Palmerston North police on 351 3600. Information can also be provided anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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- Manawatu Standard

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