Breakthrough in murder case of Upper Hutt woman Lois Tolley

Police probing the murder Lois Tolley have identified the owner of a white ute as part of their ongoing investigation. Photo / Supplied
Police probing the murder Lois Tolley have identified the owner of a white ute as part of their ongoing investigation. Photo / Supplied

Police probing the murder of Lois Tolley in Upper Hutt have identified the owner of a white ute as part of their ongoing investigation.

After launching a public appeal on Thursday in an attempt to identify the owner of the vehicle seen on Ward St, police confirmed this morning that the owner has come forward and will be spoken to by detectives.

The owner of a silver vehicle shown in CCTV footage released earlier by police has also been identified, interviewed and eliminated from enquiries.

Police investigating the homicide said they would like to thank a number individuals for coming forward.

After launching a public appeal on Thursday in an attempt to identify the owner of a white ute seen on Ward St, police confirmed this morning that the owner has come forward. Photo / NZ Police
After launching a public appeal on Thursday in an attempt to identify the owner of a white ute seen on Ward St, police confirmed this morning that the owner has come forward. Photo / NZ Police

Police have been trying to identify the owners of the ute and clothing in the case of Tolley's murder.

Several items from the Ward St scene and nearby have been identified as potentially connected to the investigation, Detective Senior Sergeant Glenn Barnett said.

Police are trying to identify the owners of several clothing items, including this shoe. Photo / NZ Police
Police are trying to identify the owners of several clothing items, including this shoe. Photo / NZ Police

The ute was parked in Ward St early on the morning on December 9, and was seen leaving the area just before midnight that same day, as well as driving past the scene around the time the killing was occurring.

"We want to know what the driver may have seen, and who was driving the ute," Barnett said.

A beanie and single shoe were both found outside the scene and police are keen to identify an owner or the person who was wearing it in that area around December 9.

Police are trying to identify the owners of several clothing items, including this beanie. Photo / NZ police
Police are trying to identify the owners of several clothing items, including this beanie. Photo / NZ police

A single jandal was found within the crime scene.

Police would like to speak to anyone who recognises either the ute or any of the clothing items.

A single jandal was found within the crime scene. Photo / NZ police
A single jandal was found within the crime scene. Photo / NZ police

Police are also still trying to identify four persons of interest:

Person 1:
• Male, tall (around 6 foot 2, or 1.88m) with a skinny build, aged 20s to 30s
• Wearing dark, baggy clothing, a hoody (with the hood up), dark, low-slung pants, and possibly white underwear
• Carrying a large, rectangular object

Person 2:
• Male, shorter than person 1, with a skinny build
• Wearing dark baggy clothing

Person 3:
• Male, tall, with a lean build
• Wearing dark clothing, long dark pants and a hoody with the hood up

Person 4:
• Male
• Sounded younger than the other persons
• Believed to be the man that was seen upset outside Lois' flat

"Police acknowledge that these descriptions are not very detailed, but we reiterate what we've said before - somebody knows who these people are, and they need to come forward and share what they know with police," Barnett said.

"As previously reported, police believe it is also possible that one or more females may be involved, and that more than the four people sighted outside Lois' flat that night know what has happened and who is responsible for her death."

Anyone with information can contact the Operation Archer team based at Upper Hutt Police Station on 04 527 2300.

Information can also be provided anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

- NZ Herald

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