Northland Police have launched a homicide investigation after a man died this afternoon in Whangarei Hospital.
At 11pm last night, a passing police patrol was flagged down in Bonnett Road, Kaitaia by a member of the public informing them of a badly injured man on the side of the road.
Ambulance was notified and attended. The 35-year-old victim was transported to Kaitaia Hospital and further transferred to Whangarei Hospital Intensive Care Unit and placed on life support.
The next of kin are being notified.
The victim was wearing, black shorts, a grey hooded sweat shirt and steel capped work boots.
There were a number of people present in the Bonnett Road area attending a function.
A total of 15 Police and specialists from the ESR are currently working on the investigation.
Police will complete a scene examination today and a post mortem will be undertaken to determine the cause of death.
"This is a tragic start to the new year for a family. This appears to be an unprovoked attack which has resulted in this man's death", said Detective Inspector Kevin Burke from Northland Police.
Police would like to hear from anybody who may have seen the victim earlier in the evening before he was discovered in Bonnett Road and anybody who has attended the function to contact them on 09 408 6500 or alternatively if they wish to pass information anonymously contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.