Tauranga police called to the Eastern Bay

By Katee Shanks


Reports of gunfire brought armed Tauranga police to the Eastern Bay of Plenty where a quiet afternoon turned to bedlam for residents.

Sergeant Denis Foster of the Whakatane police said about 3.20pm officers received the reports of shots being fired and a patched gang member in the area with a firearm.

A Te Teko resident, who did not wish to be named, said a gun had been fired in Huia Cres.

He said a car had driven into Huia Cres and someone had shot at a known gang member's home while children were playing nearby. As the car left a retaliatory shot had been fired.

A post on Facebook suggested the shot had hit the car. It asked how the f******s liked their car and said shotguns made big holes.

The same person said shots had been fired in the same area a week before but it had been in the middle of the night.

Police set up cordons in Te Teko Rd, Okaahu Rd and Powell Rd and thoroughly checked all vehicles leaving the cordoned area.

As a result of the cordons firearms, not believed to be related to the incident, were taken from one car and a person was processed for drink-driving.

Tauranga Armed Offenders' Squad members swarmed into Te Teko just after 5pm. A truck and at least five police cars were parked outside the Te Teko Police Station as officers were briefed on the afternoon's events. Locals, including many youngsters, gathered at the shops across the road to watch the action.

Local and armed police then drove to a house in Te Teko Rd, about 400 metres past the cordon. After 30 minutes they began to leave but media were not allowed to drive past the house.

Across the road several patched gang members were gathered on the front lawn of a house.

Mr Foster said the AOS secured the area and searched a property, however no firearms were found.

Te Teko police were making further inquiries and so far no arrests had been made, he said.

- BAY OF PLENTY TIMES

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