"At 4.10am today a 28 year old, male Police Officer was shot several times outside a house in Buckingham Crescent, Papatoetoe.Our thoughts and hopes for a full and speedy recovery are with the injured officer and his family.
"A police patrol vehicle noticed a suspicious vehicle in a driveway. The vehicle had its hazards lights on and the two officers presumed it had been interfered with, one officer approached the vehicle on foot and was shot at in the darkness," says Superintendent Mike Bush, District Commander for Counties Manukau Police.
"Police assistance arrived at the scene almost immediately and six officers entered the scene and recovered the injured officer. I applaud the decision of the senior staff involved in this incident to extract the young Constable in the dangerous situation they were in."
The police officer was shot in his leg and his elbow. He suffered severe blood lost. He is currently at Middlemore Hospital undergoing surgery, his condition is described by medics as serious but stable.
"We are talking to a number of people, one person of significant interest. This person was located close to the scene. We are trying to establish what role he played within the incident. It is believed that there may still be one more offender outstanding," says Mr Bush.
Two firearms have been located at the scene. All staff at the scene are armed and the area is cordoned off."
Not counting armed robberies it's been a while since an armed siege has happened in NZ, the last one was in June when a paraplegic man was shot dead in Burnside, Christchurch.
In May Jan Molenaar shot dead a police officer and critically injured three other people in Napier (see Armed sieges and gun politics in NZ) and in January innocent bystander Halatau Naitoko was killed in cross fire in an armed stand-off that brought an Auckland motorway to a stand still.
This latest shooting of a police officer in the line of duty (the 7th in 18 months) is bound to re-ignite the debate about arming NZ's police.
Firearms commonplace in NZ
New Zealand has 11 times as many guns per capita as Britain and 60 percent more than Australia (police are armed in Australia) There are an estimated 230,000 licensed firearms owners using approximately 1.1 million firearms, enough for 1 in 4 of the population. There are no figures for the number of weapons illegally owned by unlicensed people.
During a call to one domestic incident in a house in Otahuhu, South Auckland police came across an arms cache of about 45 high powered shot guns and rifles and ammunition.
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