Pizza man slaying shocks town
Part of Paeroa died yesterday after a man considered "guardian of the shop fronts" was found in a pool of blood metres from his home and business.
"The pizza man" Jordan Voudouris was found dead near the end of his driveway leading to Hall St behind his popular Mykonos Pizza and Pasta takeaway where he also lived.
It is understood the shopkeeper next door found the 57-year-old's body in a pool of blood yesterday morning.
Vicki Brimblecombe owns The Depot, another store down from the pizza shop, and said she understood the store owner between her and Mr Voudouris found the pizza shop open and the oven still on.
"She went looking for him and found him outside the back gate."
Police sealed off Hall St and a section of Willoughby St where Mr Voudouris' body lay for most of the day as homicide investigators combed the scene for clues.
His body was removed later in the afternoon and taken to Auckland for an autopsy.
Detective Senior Sergeant Mike Whitehead said investigators were looking into evidence of trauma injuries but would not elaborate further on injuries or whether weapons were involved.
Police are looking at a possible link following two incidents in Waihi overnight on Sunday where burglars jemmied open the Professionals Real Estate office back door.
Professionals branch manager Peter Sherman said someone tried to break into his business and that of neighbouring Betta Electrical.
Mr Sherman arrived at work yesterday morning to find the back door open and a small safe gone. It was later recovered by police in a nearby creek.
Mr Sherman also knew Mr Voudouris, "the pizza man". "He was a hell of a nice guy," he said.
Mr Sherman recalled stopping for pizza on the way back from Auckland one stormy night. When he got back to his car, pizza in hand, it wouldn't start.
In a flash, the Greek pizza chef raced inside, grabbed some jumper cables and sent Mr Sherman on his way.
Last night, Hauraki District Mayor John Tregidga told the Waikato Times that Paeroa took out the 2012 Community of the Year title thanks to people like Mr Voudouris.
"He was not only supportive of his fellow business people, he was supportive of the entire community and they are all hurting," he said.
Mr Tregidga said he hoped "whoever is responsible is caught and held accountable".
Others took to Mykonos' Facebook page yesterday to vent a range of mixed emotions as news of his death spread.
Like many, Jude Zurcher described Mr Voudouris as "a lovely, hard-working, caring man".
"We are so angry that someone could do this. May you RIP. We will always remember your smile, busy busy ways and the way you cared about the youth in this town."
Mr Voudouris' niece, Alexcia Voudouris, thanked those leaving tributes for their support. "Thank you all for your kind words. My Uncle's family, and my family, appreciate it.
"Hopefully we can find out what happened, so he can truly rest in peace," she wrote.
Ms Brimblecombe described Mr Voudouris as "a feisty person so he probably chased whoever it was".
She said he was a thin man, about her height, well under 6 foot – a good guy.
She said he'd take one day off per week to visit his children in Auckland and they'd regularly stay with him during holidays. He gave her a feeling of safety. She thought of him as a "guardian of the shopfronts".
By yesterday afternoon, bouquets of flowers and heartfelt notes were piling up outside Mykonos.
"We love you Jordan and will sadly miss you and your smile. RIP peace lovely friend," one note said.
"We will miss your hot chips they were the best. RIP The Sk8r Boys", said another.
Since Mykonos opened eight years ago Mr Voudouris had built up a very good reputation, Granville's Antiques owner Leonie Mason said.
"We all knew him – he was the pizza man. He looked after the kids in town and his pizzas were the best."
Anyone with information regarding the investigation can contact Paeroa police on 078628744. Or leave information anonymously on Crimestoppers 0800555111.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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