A dramatic photo has emerged on Facebook claiming to show the moment an Aboriginal man was shot by police in Central West NSW.

Justin Hardy shared the image this afternoon, identifying the man as "my brother" Dennis John 'DJ' Doolan "unarmed in red shot buy [sic] a police officer.. today... pure racism at its finest..."

The victim, who is in his 30s, was shot by police in Cowra. Hardy's account, which had more than 200 shares in two hours, clashes with reports the man may have been armed.

NSW Police confirmed the man was shot by police "during a confrontation" in a statement at 3pm and said a critical incident team would investigate.

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Emergency services were called to Jindalee Circuit at about 12.10pm. "On arrival officers located a man and attempted to speak with him," police said. "During a confrontation, the man was shot by police.

"The officers treated him at the scene until the arrival of NSW Ambulance Paramedics who conveyed him to Cowra Airport where he was airlifted to Orange Base Hospital.

"The 32-year-old man is in a serious but stable condition with a gunshot wound to his lower back."

A NSW Ambulance spokesman said paramedics "treated a male patient believed to be in his 30s on scene for a gunshot wound to his left buttock."

The man is in a stable condition and his injuries are not believed to be life-threatening.

Police are looking for witnesses. The investigation will be subject to an independent review.