Police say a man shot dead in Paeroa yesterday was shot in the torso, not in the back as his partner claims.

A post-mortem was completed today as part of the police investigation into the incident that led to Mike Taylor's death.

Police said as a result they could confirm he was "shot in the torso as he allegedly threatened police staff who were responding to the incident."

The statement followed Natalie Avery's claim to Fairfax that her partner Mike Taylor "had nothing in his hands" and was walking away from them when she says police fired two shots.

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"He had his f***ing back to them. And he had his hands up in the air.

"I thought they'd tasered him, but they'd shot him."

The shooting occurred on the couple's property on County Rd, in the Karangahake Gorge, just after 8.30am yesterday.

Acting Assistant Commissioner Bruce Bird said as Mr Taylor approached police armed with a machete, a number of shots were fired from the front seat of the patrol car at short range.

"He has then moved back from the officers away from the patrol car where he attempted to follow police instructions however collapsed from his injuries.

"Once the situation was secure, the attending police staff immediately commenced first aid and CPR.

"We can appreciate that this was a fast moving and traumatic event for those involved, including family members who were present.

New Zealand Police extend our deepest sympathies to his family and loved ones at this time."

Police have this afternoon met with his family and have spoken with them about the findings of the post-mortem.

As well as the police investigation, two other investigations were also being completed - one by the Independent Police Conduct Authority and another by the Coroner.