An "escalating trend of violence against police" has prompted numerous calls for more support after a lone officer was shot at on patrol in Northland.
Police are continuing to hunt two gunmen who opened fire on the officer, who was driving her patrol car south of Kerikeri early Tuesday morning.
Police are also continuing to investigate a kidnapping near Waipapa on Monday evening to establish whether there is a link.
Northland MP Matt King, a former police officer, said there has been an "escalating trend of violence against police and against society by criminals".
One of King's sons has been in the police force for one year, and his grandfather was also a cop.
"In the old days the worst my granddad saw was a knuckle sandwich.
"In my day it was more bats and knives and not as many gun incidents.
"My son has already been to a number of incidents involving firearms. He's got his pistol on more times in his year than I did in five years."
King said police should not be on lone patrols during night shifts.
Even at routine checks, things can go wrong very quickly, he said.
"It's absolutely appalling that a police officer is working on their own in the middle of the night.
"Police officers are facing more violence directed at them than ever before. People will take on the cops a hell of a lot more often these days."
King spent 14 years in the force in Auckland and Northland before retiring in 2007.
He recalls a couple of "close calls", including a man who threw a tomahawk at him, which missed by an arms' length.
And two men who had robbed a dairy on the North Shore came at him wielding a machete and knife.
King saved himself by pretending he had a gun.
"I had my baton and held it like a rifle and screamed at them pretending it was a gun. They dropped on the ground, believing my bluff.
"I've been in some hairy situations, but I've never had to stare down the barrel of a gun."
The officer was driving along Puketona Rd, between the quarry and Puketona Junction when a car pulled out of a driveway and stopped in the middle of the road.
Two men got out of their car and pointed guns at her, and one fired from close range spraying her windscreen with shotgun pellets.
The officer was unharmed.
The shooting sparked a massive police operation, which included searching nearby farmland and houses on Matauri Bay Rd, where the kidnapped man was dumped.
The kidnapping was reported to police on Tuesday morning after the victim approached a Matauri Bay property asking for help.
Police also cannot confirm whether the two ram raids, at Four Square in Paihia and at a Moerewa dairy which happened the same morning, are linked to the shooting and kidnapping.
Northland investigations manager detective inspector Dene Begbie said the victim in the kidnapping is "doing well considering the circumstances".
"Our officer who was shot at is also being well supported by her colleagues and the wider organisation.
"We are making good progress with both investigations but still have a significant amount of work to be completed."
Kerikeri resident Leanne McKinnon, whose husband John was in the police force for 32 years and is now retired, said the officer shouldn't have been on her own.
"My husband was the officer in charge at Kumeu police station [in Auckland] and he really struggled with having his guys out on their own because backup was such a long way away.
"No one should be in a car on their own, they should always be two-up."
McKinnon said the dangers have always been there but are more obvious now due to social media.
"As a wife of a police officer for many years it is something you think about a lot and are always glad when they come through the door."
Whangārei resident Sherilyn Dawson posted on social media the incident was "absolutely disgraceful".
"My late ex-husband was a policeman," she said.
"I used to worry about him working late shifts on his own, particularly as backup was at least 20 minutes away.
"Double ups on night shifts and dash cams in all patrol cars as a start."
In response, Begbie said: "Staff at times do work on their own and at other times they are partnered up".
The Police Association vice-president Mike McRandle has renewed the association's long-standing call for officers to be routinely armed.
When asked whether he agreed, King said his National caucus's stance was that it should be a decision for the police commissioner.
However, King said the decision to put a firearm on should be left to the individual officer or supervisor based on a threat assessment at the time.
"It shouldn't be made by someone driving a desk."
Begbie urged anyone with information or sightings of the Nissan Skyline with the registration MWD839 to come forward. The car is thought to have been used in both incidents.
"We know that there are people out there who will know who these offenders are and we urge them to do the right thing and contact police."
Anyone with information can contact Kerikeri Police on 105 or anonymously through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.