Police will rely on a man's dental records to confirm his identity after his body was found badly mutilated.
The man was killed in a violent attack about 11.45pm at Merton Village, St Johns - a cluster of Housing New Zealand units for pensioners - and a man has been charged with murder.
Police say they believe the victim is a 77-year-old Glen Innes resident but they have yet to formally identify him. It is understood the man's body was unrecognisable.
One resident at the village, who asked not to be named, was unaware there had been a murder and said residents were "frustrated" they hadn't been told why there was a crime scene cordon.
"I was watching Coronation St and Rambo last night and then I heard this noise outside and it was the police and they wouldn't tell us anything," he said.
"We never have any incidents here, we're all pensioners, we're all gold carders.
"It's so quiet out here, sometimes you've got to knock on the door to see if anybody is alive."
Resident Zijab Garibovic, 70, has been charged with murder and will appear in court on Monday after undergoing a mental health evaluation.
Garibovic, understood to be a Russian immigrant, speaks no English and needs an interpreter.
Another resident said the accused had lived in his unit since 2010 but kept to himself because he struggled to speak English.
"Now and again, he would say hello and I'd say hello back," she said.
Residents said that he frequently drank with another pensioner living at the complex.
Police were yesterday completing a scene examination and were looking for objects in trees and under cars.
Detective Senior Sergeant Aaron Pascoe said it was clear that something violent occurred.
"However, we are not looking for anyone else in relation to this incident," he said.
Police were also notifying the man's next of kin.
Housing New Zealand spokeswoman Cassandra Rivers said the organisation would not comment on the incident because it was still being investigated by police.
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