James Ihaka

James Ihaka is a Herald reporter based in Hamilton.

Neighbours tell of loud threats to alleged killer

26-year-old man charged with murder after Somali man bleeds to death. Photo / Supplied
26-year-old man charged with murder after Somali man bleeds to death. Photo / Supplied

As Abdi Awad lay bleeding from his wounds outside his Hamilton home, neighbours could hear one of his friends yelling, "We're going to get you", at the man's attacker.

Mr Awad, a 42-year-old Somali, died from blood loss after he suffered puncture wounds in a scuffle outside his Enderley flat.

Yesterday, his alleged killer - a 26-year-old man, also of Somali descent - appeared in Hamilton District Court charged with possession of an offensive weapon, and murder.

The accused, who is slightly built and wore a white jumper suit, was arrested at a Dey St property on Wednesday night.

Community magistrate Ngaire Mascelle granted him interim name suppression before setting his next court appearance date for November 29.

Mr Awad's neighbours told the Herald he had only recently moved into his small Chamberlain Place flat.

One woman, Jess, said she looked out her window and saw him lying on the ground shortly before he died close to midnight on Tuesday.

"Some people were knocking on my window and were saying call an ambulance or something but I couldn't understand them," she said.

Jess could see two men hovering over Mr Awad's body, one of them began shouting at the man's attacker: "We're going to get you."

Other neighbours said they could see two men arguing in Mr Awad's car port. One woman said he often had visitors. "Sometimes there were parties there that would go all night long," said a neighbour, who asked not to be named.

Hamilton police were yesterday searching Hamilton streets for the weapon that was used in the attack.

They urged residents of the Enderley cul-de-sac where the murder took place, and surrounding streets, to check their properties for a weapon.

Detective Senior Sergeant Karl Thornton of the Hamilton CIB said the accused went to addresses in nearby Kenney Cres and adjoining Hockin Place between the time of the altercation and his arrest in Dey St at 8pm on Wednesday.

"Despite his arrest there is still significant work to be done on the inquiry.

"In particular, we are seeking the weapon used in the murder and we believe the public hold the key in locating it," Mr Thornton said.

Neighbours of the man's address listed on court documents said they saw a man and woman being coaxed out of a house at midday on Wednesday.

One neighbour said it was difficult to tell who lived at the house because there were often large groups of Somali people, including children.

A member of the Waikato Somali Friendship Society, Khadar Ibrahim, said Mr Awad had lived in Hamilton for at least 15 years and came from a large family.

A woman telephoned by the Herald gave her name was Abdiyo Awad and said Mr Awad was her brother-in-law.

She said he had a 17-year-old son.

However, a young man at the house later said the woman's English was not good, that she did not live there, that the family were not related to Mr Awad and that they didn't know him.

- NZ Herald

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