Shooting a front tyre of a truck to stop the driver who had ploughed through the front doors of a police station was an "extremely rare" tactical manoeuvre, according to officers.
Te Aroha's Daniel Martin De Boer had just driven the $150,000 Kenworth truck through the Morrinsville Police Station's front doors before turning the rig back to his home town.
Faced with an inability to stop it or appeal to the driver, Inspector Jeff Penno said the tactical option of shooting the truck's front tyres was chosen.
De Boer today admitted six of the eight charges he faced when he appeared in the Morrinsville District Court.
Through his lawyer, Charles Bean, the 54-year-old admitted charges of resisting arrest, intentional damage of the station, theft of the Kenworth truck, failing to stop and two charges of assaulting police with a truck.
Police withdrew charges of attempted arson of the truck and another charge of assaulting police with the truck.
The incident kicked off just before midnight on May 5 when Boer, listed as a fork lift operator on court documents, took the Kenworth from the yard of his employer, Pyramid Trucking Ltd, in Te Aroha.
He drove it through the station's front doors before taking off along State Highway 26 back towards Te Aroha.
He was spotted by two police patrol units but ignored their pleas for him to stop.
After more than 90 minutes on the road, the officers fired shots at one of the truck's front tyres which brought it to a halt.
De Boer had interim name suppression leading up until today's hearing but Bean did not file a new application for it to continue so it lapsed.
Waikato police Inspector Jeff Penno, the incident controller on the night of the incident, told the Herald he was "incredibly proud" of his officers' actions on the night which saw the truck brought to a halt without injury to anyone.
As for why they chose the tactical option of shooting the truck's front tyre, Penno said he couldn't comment but said it wasn't a decision made lightly.
"The decision to use the firearm in the circumstances was not taken lightly and is indeed very rare but was utilised about one hour and 40 minutes into the incident."
Police standard operating procedure was to "cordon, contain and appeal".
"In this instance we couldn't cordon because any police car was a threat at being hit. We couldn't contain because of the nature of the vehicle and we couldn't negotiate because we had no contact with the alleged offender.
"So tactically it was incredibly challenging. It's a truck and we knew it wasn't going to run out of fuel."
Penno said staff were on foot around Te Aroha which "exposed them to extreme danger".
"They acted incredibly brave in the circumstances to keep their community safe and to take the offender into custody without any harm to any individual."
De Boer was remanded on further bail for sentencing in August.
Pyramid Trucking executives have been contacted for comment.