Reports of police operation near Katikati

By staff reporters

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A policeman looks down the road in rural Katikati, where an armed cordon has been set up by police this afternoon. Photo/Andrew Warner
A policeman looks down the road in rural Katikati, where an armed cordon has been set up by police this afternoon. Photo/Andrew Warner

5.16pm: A Katikati man has had to pick up his younger brother and sister from their school bus as armed police block a road in Katikati following an incident this afternoon.

Police have set up a cordon at the intersection of Rea Rd and Killen Rd and local resident Scott, 22, said ''no one was getting through''.

Scott was asked to pick up his younger siblings, who were unable to get through the cordon.

Scott said police told him they were looking for someone.

"There's two mufti cars, a squad car, three or four other cars and AOS guys down the road,'' he said.

Scott said he wasn't concerned, despite the heavy police presence.

''It's a rural area. It's not the first time this has happened in Katikati,'' he said.

In a written statement released after inquiries by the Bay of Plenty Times, police said they responded to an armed incident in a rural Katikati area just after 2pm today, with the Armed Offender Squad.

''Police are speaking with one person in relation to the incident who is assisting with inquiries,'' a police spokeswoman said.

''There is no danger to the public and police anticipate the incident to be resolved shortly.''

Police are not looking for anyone else.

4:53pm: Police are stopping cars travelling along Rea Rd in Katikati as they search for someone.

A resident said there were armed police at the end of Killen Rd and police were stopping cars heading both ways along Rea Rd.

He said police had told him they were looking for someone..

A reporter at the scene said a cordon was set up at the intersection of Killen Rd and Rea Rd. "Nobody was getting through," he said.

EARLIER: Reports are coming in of a police operation near Katikati.

A reporter at the scene said an ambulance was parked on the side of Rea Rd and a police van and undercover police car could be seen at a Seeka packhouse.

A reader said they saw about eight police cars, including two undercover cars and a police car, and a police van speeding through Te Puna in the direction of Katikati about 4.10pm.

Another person travelling from Katikati to Tauranga said she thought it was odd when she noticed more police presence in the oncoming traffic than usual.

"First of all it was maybe one or two going normally, then another, also without lights on. Then there were three in a row and I thought that was strange but when I got to five minutes out of Te Puna there were more, all screaming past with their lights blazing.

"There were maybe eight cars, a police van, plus a couple of undercover cars with lights and sirens going like rwaaar.

"The traffic itself was probably only going about 70km/h and they were screaming past over taking people. They were in a bloody hurry."

It is understood cordons have been set up in the vicinity of Rea Rd.

Police have not yet responded to requests for information.

More to come.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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