An elderly woman is living in fear as night after night someone throws large rocks at her house.

Over the past few months, someone has thrown a total of 31 rocks on to the woman's house in Te Mata Rd, Havelock North.

She is in her late 70s and lives alone. Her house backs onto Havelock North High School.

The rocks are usually thrown on to her roof in the middle of the night.


Inspector Karl Bauerfeind of Hawke's Bay Police said the woman was terrified and lived in constant fear.

"For some reason, this person (or people) think it's fun to scare the living daylights out of an elderly woman by throwing rocks on her roof at night. They make a very loud noise and the woman is often woken in the middle of the night by them hitting her roof and rolling off.

"This is a terrible, frightening situation for an elderly person to be in and is seriously affecting her quality of life."

Hastings District Councillor and chairman of Age Concern Havelock North, Wayne Bradshaw, described the actions as "ridiculous".

"Who would do that to anyone, let alone a 70-year-old woman living alone, it defies logic."

Mr Bradshaw said that a lot of elderly don't want to be a bother and this can be a part of the problem. "When I was younger, neighbours would look after and show concern for one another, you'd like to think this still exists."

He went as far as calling it torture for the old woman.

Mr Bradshaw said that elderly abuse was a hidden dilemma in New Zealand.

"We need to change our attitude toward the elderly because, God willing, we're all going to get there one day."

He believes that many problems in society could be solved by being just a little bit more civil and respectful to each other.

Police have spoken to the woman's neighbours and the adjacent school as part of their inquiries. They have also been doing regular patrols past the woman's house at night. Her house appears to be the only one targeted in the area.

Mr Bauerfeind said police were keen to hear from anyone who had information about who was responsible for the rock throwing.

"Someone will know who is doing this. The offenders are likely to have bragged about it to their friends or even videoed it, so we'd like to speak to anyone who has heard something about it."

Anyone with information should contact Constable Deb Potter on 06 831 0700.