Lock down in Napier

By Anna Ferrick

A Napier street was held in full lockdown yesterday after reports a large cache of AK-47 rifles had been spotted at a residential address.

Armed police and the Armed Offenders Squad warned Faraday St residents to stay indoors during a sweep of the street and set up a road-block that prevented locals from entering or leaving the street between 3.25pm and 5.30pm.

Reminiscent of the May 2009 Napier siege on Chaucer Road, just one street away from yesterday's incident, police swarmed the quiet street and cordoned surrounding areas.

Road spikes were laid at the base of the street, while as AOS team armed with dogs entered the area at about 4pm.

Police had earlier received a report of the weapons stash and had questioned the occupier of the home.

It's understood no weapons were found and that no arrests had been made.

When contacted by Hawke's Bay Today, police last night refused to comment.

One local, Jaica Booth, 18, was told she wouldn't be allowed to go home after finishing work yesterday afternoon.

"We heard there were guns in a house up there, I tried to go back home but I was told to go away and come back later," Ms Booth said.

She said she hadn't heard of or seen anything suspicious on the street in the past.

Another resident, who did not wish to be named, had just gone out to get a DVD but was told he wouldn't be returning to his house anytime soon.

"I've only been here for four months and I thought I'd bought a house in a nice part of the city," he said.

Referring to the Napier siege where Senior Constable Len Snee was fatally shot by Jan Molenaar he said: "I thought when I bought the house it's got to be safe here now, lightning doesn't strike the same place twice."

The man had left his two teenage daughters at home while he went into town. He used a phone inside the dairy to call home and make sure they were safe.

"They're okay they haven't heard anything, I left a roast in the oven but that's scraped now."

Road blocks were removed at 5.30pm and residents were allowed to return to their homes.


- Hawkes Bay Today

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