Double murder: Man kills himself in front of police

By Morgan Tait, Anna Leask, Newstalk ZB

Man identified as being in a relationship with Glenys Stanton kills himself in front of police officers.

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Police have confirmed the man who shot himself in the Woodhill Mountain Bike park was a former partner of Glenys Stanton.

Counties Manukau district commander superintendent John Tims told media he that although the armed offenders squad were only 50 metres away from the man when he shot himself, he didn't believe the man was aware that police were closing in on him.

Ms Stanton was shot alongside Trevor Waite at his Opaheke house at the weekend.

Mr Tims said police were interested in talking to a number of suspects yesterday and they found and spoke to some of them.

One "in particular, a male Caucasian, aged 51, unemployed from Waimauku, we could not find yesterday afternoon, but at about 9pm last night we did get phone calls from a friend and family members of this male saying that he was in a distressed state, he was unstable and that he was in possession of a firearm.

"He also made comments that you could infer he was talking about the homicide in Ponga Rd.

"Police went to find him, and a patrol from the shore located his vehicle - a black Ford Falcon - in Woodhill Forest.

"AOS members were deployed to the scene, along with [the police helicopter] Eagle,'' Mr Tims said.

"Eagle located this male, AOS members cordoned and contained the area ... before they could contact this male on his cellphone, he shot himself.''

The North Shore CIB were conducting a scene investigation at the forest, Mr Tims said.

Police were also investigating the dead man's car.

A post mortem examination on the man is expected to be carried out later today.

"I can say that there is a strong inference that the male in the forest has some connection to the homicide in Ponga Rd - that is based on his actions, behaviour and comments that he has made to people.

"There is a lot of investigative work that needs to be done to cement that inference into evidence,'' Mr Tims said.

The coroner and Independent Police Conduct Authority have been informed of the death.

A gun had been recovered from the forest, but police were yet to confirm whether it was the same one used to kill Glenys Stanton and Trevor Waite.

No shots were fired by police at Woodhill forest last night, Mr Tims said.

Website links investigated

Police are also speaking to people the murdered couple met through a website for outdoor enthusiasts.

The Herald can reveal that in June, Ms Stanton introduced a boyfriend to friends she had made through the meetup.com website.

Two months later, she died alongside another man - Mr Waite, 51.

The 47-year-old divorcee had recently begun a new job as a flight attendant for Air New Zealand and was making a fresh start, seeking new friends and challenges.

She met Mr Waite a couple of months ago at an event for people who enjoy hiking and mountain biking, organised through meetup.com, which connects interest groups.
Over the weekend, the two were shot dead in the bedroom of Mr Waite's lifestyle block home in Papakura.

They were found by Mr Waite's 18-year-old daughter Kelsey about 11.20am on Sunday. Police said they died of gunshot wounds sometime between Friday night and Sunday morning.

Evidence found at the scene indicated the shooter was known to one or both victims but police refused to elaborate.

Meetup.com member Cristina Johnson, told the Herald Ms Stanton cycled the Timber Trail in Pureora Forest Park, near Taupo, at Queen's Birthday Weekend with a man she told her and other riders was her boyfriend.

Another member, David Griffiths, said he met Ms Stanton and a tall, blond man she called her boyfriend at a house party in Waiuku during another weekend in June.
Mr Griffiths said meetup.com groups were social but not "sleazy", though sometimes members dated each other. "We are all adults and if someone is single and you're single ..." he said.

When the Herald told inquiry head Detective Inspector Dave Lynch of a recent boyfriend and asked if he could comment, he said: "Any male acquaintances of hers will be spoken to as part of the investigation."

Ms Stanton and Mr Waite were both members of two interest groups on the site, including South Auckland Gatherings (SAGS), which has 187 members.

Jane Buckley, who runs SAGS and has organised events attended by both victims, said she was "speaking to the police about Trevor".

Mr Waite joined meetup.com in September last year, and Ms Stanton in April this year. In her profile Ms Stanton said she was "young at heart" and enjoyed keeping fit and challenging herself. Mr Waite said he had joined for "meeting new people and motivation to get out on new [mountain bike] trails a bit more".

Mr Lynch said the couple's friends and associates would also be spoken to. Officers would also examine texts, emails and online activity for both victims.

Police met the victims' families on Monday night to glean more information, including how long they had known each other and the nature of their relationship.

Mr Lynch said it had appeared they had known each other for "a couple of months", but police were still working on building a clearer picture. He did not know if either victim had a partner.

Ms Stanton's employer, Air NZ, refused to comment and directed staff not to speak to media.

Mr Waite was a senior manager for Vero Insurance and had been with the company for 15 years. The company said that out of respect for the victims' families, it did not want to comment.

Members of both families attended a police press conference yesterday, where statements were read on their behalf.

From friends and family:


Statement read by Ivan Gillatt, close friend of Trevor Waite

Trevor was a devoted father to his family of two daughters and one son. Trevor was a quiet, caring, kind man and family and friends are shocked and devastated. From his parents: Trevor was a wonderful son that we are very proud of. From his children: He was a good dad who was always there for us and supported us in everything we did. From his brother and sister: Trevor was a great brother and we loved him very much.

Statement read by John Kenyon, Glenys Stanton's brother-in-law

We are shocked to learn of the tragic circumstances of Glenys and Trevor's passing. Glenys leaves behind two grown daughters and three grandchildren. She was a beautiful person on the inside and out. She was a wonderful mother and friend to those who knew her. She was the kind of person who made the most of every opportunity and lived life to the full.

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- NZ Herald

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