A 13-year-old boy has been charged with the murder of his caregiver in rural northern Taranaki.
The 50-year-old woman, who was not related to the boy, died after the shooting at her home at a remote settlement near Okoki this afternoon.
Her name has not been released.
"We are working through the processes of notifying the victim's next of
kin and family members in this very sad situation," Detective Senior Sergeant Grant Coward of New Plymouth police said.
"There is still significant investigative work to do in our inquiry including extensive
scene and forensic examinations which will continue tomorrow.
Police were called to the shooting about 3.30pm.
A gun was recovered at the scene and police were speaking to family members believed to have been present when the shooting occurred.
The woman's body tonight remained at the house, which would be guarded overnight, and would be removed tomorrow for a post-mortem examination.
Police appealed for sightings of a car driven from the woman's home and stopped by police in Waitara late this afternoon.
We would like to hear from people who saw this car travelling between the remote settlement of Okoki and Waitara between 3.30pm and 5.30pm tonight," Mr Coward said.
"We have a lot more inquiry work to do, and people can help us with
sightings of the car.
"This is a stressful and emotional time for people who were present at the
house, and others in the community."
The boy is to appear in New Plymouth District Court tomorrow.