Russell Blackstock is a senior reporter at the Weekend Herald and Herald on Sunday.

Police seek trio in Haumoana homicide inquiry

Mark Beale, 45, died following assault in Haumoana, Hawkes Bay. Photo / Supplied
Mark Beale, 45, died following assault in Haumoana, Hawkes Bay. Photo / Supplied

Police investigating the homicide of a man assaulted and left for dead on a Hawke's Bay beach are seeking three men seen fishing nearby and playing loud music.

On Monday morning police found 45-year-old Mark Beale badly injured on a Haumoana beach.

He was rushed to Hawke's Bay Hospital, but died of his injuries that night.

Detective Inspector Mike Foster said police were appealing to the public for information so they could find out why the assault occurred, and provide closure to Beale's family.

"A week into the investigation, we're getting a good picture of who was at the river mouth where Mr Beale spent his final evening," Foster said.

"As well as being a favoured fishing spot - including for Mr Beale - the reserve is a popular area for dog walking, cycling, and other recreational activities."

Police had identified, or spoken with about 20 people who had been there that evening, however Foster said they were now looking for three Maori men seen fishing there.

"They're not suspects at this stage," he said.

"But we need to get an accurate idea of who was down there."

The three men had been at the scene playing loud music "into the early hours of the morning".

Police were appealing for the men, or anyone who had seen them, to come forward.

Foster said police were seeking information about any questionable vehicles seen parked at the two carparks near the area - one at the end of Grange Rd, the other off Domain Rd.

At this stage police were unsure when exactly the assault occurred, but believed it was between 8pm on Sunday and 6am Monday.

Alternatively, information can be shared anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

- NZ Herald

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