Thames home invasion puzzle
Police believe they are closing in on the offenders who held a 73-year-old man at gunpoint, wounding him and two others, during a Thames home invasion on Monday night.
The Waikato armed offenders squad searched one property and police are examining the home where the invasion took place and two vehicles linked to the incident.
Police have identified people linked to the incident but continued to appeal for any witnesses to come forward.
Detective Sergeant Martyn Hughes, of the Thames CIB, said emergency services were called to a rest home/hospital in Parawai Rd shortly before 8.20pm.
"Occupants from a property across the road went to the hospital to raise the alarm after an alleged home invasion," Hughes said. "Initial indications are a man and a woman were at home when a vehicle pulled up the drive."
Hughes said a man went outside to see who it was when three men wearing balaclavas accosted him and took him back inside.
A short time later an 18-year-old friend of the pair arrived at the house and he, too, was held at gunpoint.
"At some point a shotgun has gone off inside the house and the intruders have fled the property.
"Initially, a 17-year-old woman from the property was reported as the sole casualty during the shooting. However, information received later confirmed the 18-year-old friend visiting the address was also wounded."
District communications manager Andrew McAlley said the man was wounded in the groin.
Police said the wounded teens discharged themselves from Thames Hospital then resurfaced at Waikato Hospital in Hamilton for further treatment.
A neighbour said she heard a dog at the property barking at about 8pm on Monday night.
The neighbour said there were regular changes in tenants at the house and police often visited. But there were other unfamiliar cars about after the shooting.
"This morning [Tuesday] a couple of [suspicious] cars drove up and down the street. The guys inside were over-dressed for the weather."
"I thought they were workers at the building site, but they weren't wearing hi-vis gear and they were driving extremely slow."
The 73-year-old man suffered facial injuries and shock and was kept in Thames Hospital overnight.
Victims described a silver and dark-coloured flat deck utility and police would like to hear from anyone who saw such a vehicle in or around Parawai Rd about the time of the incident or who saw or heard anything.
They are asked to contact Thames police on 07 858 6200 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.