Police have confirmed the Opunake man stabbed to death on Thursday and the man charged with his murder were known to each other.
However they were not saying yesterday whether the arrested man had broken in to the victim's house, or whether he was staying there when an argument broke out.
Shiloh Dallas Mareikura, 33, of Ohakune, was yesterday remanded in custody by consent, charged with the murder of Desroe Mare Bishop, 37.
He is due to appear in the High Court in New Plymouth on September 20.
Mr Bishop's body was removed from his Opunake home yesterday afternoon for autopsy.
Forensic scientists and police expect to continue their examination of Mr Bishop's Gisborne Tce home for the next few days, officer in charge of the investigation Detective Inspector Keith Borrell said yesterday.
They were also investigating another Opunake house, in Allison St, from which Armed Offenders Squad members arrested Mareikura, about four hours after Mr Bishop's death.
Opunake residents who knew the popular Mr Bishop have told the Taranaki Daily News his 10-year-old son was woken by his father's screams and ran for help after being threatened by the attacker.
While Mr Borrell was not prepared to confirm this, he did say it was Mr Bishop's son who raised the alarm.
"The young boy . . . went for help to a family member's house and they were the ones that notified police," he said. "He had to run several blocks to get help."
Emergency services, including police, ambulance and the fire brigade were all called out about 6am but Mr Bishop died at the scene.
Mr Borrell said the boy was being looked after by the Bishop family who had been offered the services of Victim Support.
"Police also have a dedicated family liaison officer working with the family during this tragic time," Mr Borrell said.
Mr Borrell would not comment on whether the weapon used in the attack had been found.
"This is part of the ongoing scene examination," he said.
He praised the Opunake community for their assistance with the investigation. It was very important that anyone who might have seen anything in the vicinity of the Gisborne Tce house between about 4am to 6am to contact police.
A total of 25 police officers from throughout the lower North Island were currently working on the investigation, Mr Borrell said.
Staff have been called in from New Plymouth, Hawera, Opunake, Whanganui, Palmerston North and Wellington.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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